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Feyenoord should emerge as heroes against Heracles

Reuven Niemeijer of Heracles scores a penalty
1 of 1

Dutch Cup fourth round
7.45pm Thursday

Feyenoord have no European football to look forward to in the new year and are making a mess of their Eredivisie title defence but they are likely to progress to the quarter-finals of the Dutch Cup when hosting divisional rivals Heracles at De Kuip.

It was always going to be a testing first half of the season for Feyenoord after they were drawn in a tough Champions League group alongside Manchester City, Shakhtar Donetsk and Napoli.

They lost five of their six games but finished off with a 2-1 triumph at home to Napoli and that result appears to have lifted their spirits.

Giovanni van Bronckhorst's side are undefeated in their last eight domestic matches and put on a superb performance to win 7-0 at city rivals Sparta Rotterdam last Sunday.

Those three points lifted them back into the top five but they are 15 points adrift of leaders PSV Eindhoven and their only realistic hope of silverware this season is to win the Dutch Cup.

At this stage of the competition they couldn't have asked for a much better draw than Heracles, who are tenth in the Eredivisie but have the worst away record in the division, taking two points from eight games.

Their leaky defence has conceded 34 goals in 17 league matches and they have kept just one away clean sheet this season (a 2-0 second-round cup victory at Rijnsburgse Boys, who play in the third tier).

Feyenoord are predictably long odds-on to get the win but punters can get a more attractive price by backing the hosts to triumph and both teams to score.

Heracles have some good attacking players with Reuven Niemeijer on six league goals this season and Brandley Kuwas third in the top flight's assists table with seven so they look capable of grabbing a consolation goal.

Recommendation
Feyenoord to win and both teams to score
1pt 13-8 Betfred, Betway

Eredivisie standings


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Giovanni van Bronckhorst's side are undefeated in their last eight domestic matches
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