Auteur Topic: The Changing Face of the Dutch Ground Scene Part One  (gelezen 3424 keer)

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Offline Han

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The Changing Face of the Dutch Ground Scene Part One
« Gepost op: apr 18, 2008, 00:13:45 »
Een onversneden en in de aanloop naar destijdse emigratie 'unvollendete' en nog ongepubliceerd artikel, geschreven in 2004. ooit bedoeld voor GroundTastic. Achterhaald door actualiteit inmiddels.

Gesteld dat dit topic een 'running gag' mag worden; verbeterd, geactualiseerd, ontdaan van taalfouten en veralgemeniseerd tot een gezamenlijke platforuminspanning.

Stel dat dit platforum besluit om de krachten te bundelen om in eigen beheer een naslagwerk(je) te produceren. Voor individueel gebruik en/of mogelijk voor 'publishing purposes on the net'. Geredigeerd en geïllustreerd. Dan is dit topic misschien een aanzet.

De 'verhaalstructuuur' is inmiddels hopeloos achterhaald en 'needs room for improvement'.



Introduction

Until the early Nineties of the last millennium the Dutch ground scene hadn’t been subject to dramatic changes, barring the odd (re) roofing, modest extension, installing of business facilities, plastic seats bolted on to existing terraces or the inevitable refurbishments to meet safety measurements.

It wasn’t until 1954 that The Netherlands saw the introduction of (semi)-professional league football, starting with one division only. By the turn of the Seventies the Dutch professional football landscape   amounted to a staggering four divisions, hosting a plethora of clubs, the majority residing in small towns, resulting in low average gates and abysmal financial records. As a result the football scene fell victim to a major reorganisation in 1971. Eventually, a fair share of clubs, sharing the town’s honours with one or even two rivals, was doomed to non-league status yet again.

Today, 18 sites form the Holland Casino Eredivisie, equivalent to the English Premier League, whilst  19 clubs compete in the Gouden Gids (Yellow Pages) Divisie. There is no relegation scheme to the non-league ranks. The country’s equivalent to the GMVConference is called Hoofdklasse Amateurs.

Home to earlier amateur clubs in the true sense of the word, having risen to professional level in the Fifties, the archetypal Dutch ground comprised of covered or uncovered shallow terracing running the entire length of the pitch opposite main stand, open end terraces rising a dozen steps only, open corners, and a modest main stand only running only half or three quarters of the length of the pitch, straddled between patches of open terracing, with hardly a barrier in sight. Imagine yourself at Gravesend & Northfleet’s Stonebridge Road or Wealdstone’s former Lower Mead, reduce the terraces slightly in height, forget the barriers and one or two roofs and that’s the archetypal Dutch ground to you.

The Netherlands has also seen the unfavourable oval concrete bowls with open terraces sweeping around corners and covered main stands, serving as venues for athletics or cycling events, either set in municipal parks or located on the outskirts of towns, at the likes of NEC, Roda JC, FC Twente, FC Utrecht, Willem II, Den Bosch and MVV. They have all gone now, either demolished or drastically redesigned into today’s lego-constructions. The grounds scene in Holland would change dramatically in the era approaching the millennium, producing an abundance of remake-remodels of Glanford Park, Deva Stadium look-a-likes and Bescot carbon-copies, pompously named after sponsors, with plastic seats in plain elevated stands, separated from the pitch by ditches, serving as safety corridors or catering boulevards.

The Last Era in the Top Flight

Our journey starts at northerly SC Heerenveen from the province of Friesland, founded in 1920 as
VV Heerenveen, leaving their homely 14,000 Sportpark Noord surroundings in the mid-Nineties. Its magnificent two-tiered wooden main stand was carefully dismantled, piece by piece, and subsequently shipped to former Dutch colony Surinam to be re-erected at FC Robin Hood’s ground in Paramaribo. Unfortunately however this scheme never materialized. Rumour has it that the cargo is still stored at the harbour and subject to looting and the elements.

Heerenveen's new stadium with its current capacity of 14,300 on the outskirts of the town is named after the club’s greatest son, Abe Lenstra, who was instrumental in the 6-5 defeat of Ajax in 1950, after trailing 1-5 with only 30 minutes left. The club are now redeveloping the East Stand, bringing the capacity to 17,500 by the summer of 2004. Construction work will than start by the summer of 2004 for the adding of second tiers to the North and South Ends, This will eventually result in a 28,000 all-seater, including facilities such as a ‘healthcare boulevard’.


Hailing from southerly former textile capital Tilburg, founded in 1896, named after former King Willem II of Orange, and playing in the red, white and blue colours of the Dutch flag, Willem II carefully cherishes its reputation of a stylish, traditional club. That said, their 18,000 Tilburg Sportpark from 1920 with its dreaded athletics track hardly reflected the club’s reputation. The undulated roofs at Willem II’s rebuilt Sportpark, now the Willem II Stadion, officially re-opened in 1995, protect 14,700 spectators from the elements, a far cry from previous decades of open terracing sweeping around three sides of the ground.

In 1996 fierce rivals and neighbours NAC Breda, founded as NOAD Advendo Combination in 1912, left their Beatrixstraat premises in favour of the Fuji Stadion, now renamed MyCom Stadion, on the outskirts of the town, holding 16,400. NAC’s partisan support at their intimidating town centre ground made for an English atmosphere that hit the history books as ‘Een Avondje NAC’, best translated as ‘a NAC night out’, the club playing its home games on Saturday nights.

Aristocratic Ajax from 1900 started a new life at the ufo-like Arena with its sliding roof, holding 51,133 spectators, having resided at 30,000 De Meer from 1934 until 1996. Regardless of emotional petitions from the pro-nostalgia contingency at the Dutch capital, there’s not a trace left of Johan Cruyff’s breeding ground, having been swallowed up by real estate. One club particularly eager to go synthetic is Ajax. The arena has prove a terrible place for growing natural grass. the club currently replace their pitch four times a season  a cost of 1 mil in engelse ponden.

The shape of the Arena obstructs sunlight, having left the Arena with huge problems from the very beginning. This season saw the arrival of the 30th pitch.

Arch-rivals and working-class heroes Feyenoord, originating from a district by the same name in Rotterdam, the world’s biggest harbour, were founded in 1908 as Feijenoord. The club's name was turned into a more 'acccessible' Feyenoord spelling during the clubs European heydays by the turn of the Seventies. Feyenoord installed a complete new roof in 1994, supported by huge pillars outside the stadium. The result is a delicate balance between concrete, steel and intimacy at the renowned 51,177 capacity De Kuip. Accidentally, the origianal design is the brainchild of then chairman Leen van Zandvliet. Legend has it that in his dreams he envisaged a 60,000 capacity stadium with an overhanging second tier. Eventually, his dream came true and De Kuip, literally ‘The Tub’, has been the club’s home since 1937.

High-profile Philips Sport Vereniging, PSV for short, saw light, how appropriate, in 1913 as a recreational club for Philips factory workers. The club's football ground has always been on the exact same spot where the ultra-modern Philips Stadion proudly stands today. PSV recently expanded to its ultimate capacity. Imagine yourself a mini-Old Trafford situated at Trafalgar Square in London and that’s the brilliant 35,270 Philips Stadion for you.

The late Nineties saw a plethora of new stadiums, including the arrival of FC Twente’s brandnew 13,500 Arke Stadion in Enschede in 1998, coinciding with the hardly regretted demise of their former oval 24,500 Diekman Stadion, opened in 1956 and much lamented for its athletics tracks. FC Twente, only a stone throw away from the German border in the Eastern province of Overijssel and the result of a merger between Sportclub Enschede and Enschedese Boys in 1965, are keen on expanding their new home which has proofed too small from day one to keep up with the club’s ambitions.

Vitesse from Arnhem, founded in 1892, left their former intimidating Nieuw Monnikenhuizen ground from 1950 to take up residence at the futuristic 28,000 Gelredome in 1999. Vitesse’s previous home was tested to the limit when a 20,000 crowd turned up for FC Utrecht’s ‘home game’ at Nieuw-Monnikenhuizen in 1981. Here, FC Utrecht took on HSV Hamburg in the UEFA Cup, their own ground being subject to alterations at the time. The Gelredome, with striking features such as a sliding roof and a fully extendable pitch is the brainchild of then club chairman Karel Aalbers, a devoted Vitesse fan and self-made millionaire, now side-lined for alleged financial irregularities but still the hardcore supporter’s favourite uncle. Aalbers is believed to have based the Gelredome concept on a matchbox.

A little further up the road and like Arnhem also within shouting distance from Germany, NEC from Nijmegen, the result of a merger between Nijmegen Football Club and Eendracht in 1910, slightly moved their De Goffert pitch to create a new 12,500 capacity lego-construction, embedded in the old ground, its former oval shaped contours still visible. The original De Goffert, idyllically set in a municipal park, opened in 1939 as a multi-purpose sports complex, fit for 30,000 spectators.

In November 2000 RBC from Roosendaal in the southern province of Brabant, founded as Excelsior in 1912 and reaching professional status in 1983, relocated from their small archetypal first division De Luiten ground to the 5,000 Vast en Goed Stadion. The club has scheduled further extension to a 10,000 all-seater by adding four extra tiers but the local council has put this scheme on hold in August 2003. RBC are now envisaging the adding of another tier to the East Stand to create 1,500 extra seats.

Coal-miners club Roda JC from Kerkrade in the deep south of the country are the result of a series of mergers. Kerkrade FC of 1926 and Bleijerheide of 1914 became Roda Sport in 1954, coinciding with the foundation year of the Dutch League. Meanwhile, Juliana, 1910, and Rapid became Rapid JC, also in 1954. Eventually Roda Sport and Rapid JC resulted in Roda JC in 1962. The club left Kaalheide, built in 1945 as an athletics stadium to accommodate 29,000 spectators on sweeping open terraces, in favour of the country’s currently fifth biggest ground, the 19,200 capacity Parkstad Limburg Stadion. Interesting of note are the pagoda-like roof elements on all four corners of the ground, serving as supporters for, floodlights curiously overhanging the undulated roof structure.

Southerly RKC from Waalwijk, once the epicentre of prosperous cobbling industry, were founded in 1940 as a merger of local sides HEC, WVB and Hercules. Like RBC Roosendaal, they are relatively newcomers to the league, having been elected in 1984, playing at their then rudimentary 6,000 capacity ground, called Olympia Sportpark by its loyals and the Bicycle Shed by their opponents. The unsighted newcomer gradually updated their ground to keep up with their progress as a compatible force to be reckoned with. RKC, adding the town’s name to their title in 1996, have recently completed the filling in of the corners to stage 7,500 seats at their homely shoebox, called the Mandemakers Stadion.

Three local clubs from Utrecht, Velox, Elinkwijk and DOS, former Dutch champions from 1958 and
playing at 18,000 De Galgenwaard since 1936, merged to become FC Utrecht in 1970. In 1981 the entire nation, in sheer disbelief, watched live scenes of demolition work at the oval-shaped cycle-tracked ground by rioting fans after the final home match. Bulldozers moved in the next day to finish what supporters had initiated, before actual reconstruction work began to turn the ground into a proper rectangular stadium, with office buildings filling in the corners. 2004 will see the completion of yet another revamp, turning the ground into a fine theatre eventually holding a 24,500 partisan crowd.

Our stadium quest through Holland’s equivalent to The Premiership temporarily sojourns at FC Volendam, founded in 1920 as RKSV Volendam in this romantic and picturesque fisherman’s village on the borders of the Ijsselmeer Lake. Its partially redeveloped Veronica Stadion, once called De Dijk in its humble days of shallow covered stands and its open wooden end terraces, holds 6,000 seats to host the top flight’s newcomers. Incidentally, no other football club in Holland got promoted and relegated as frequently as FC Volendam. A purpose-built traditional fisherman’s boat, called ‘Heen en Weer’, best translated as ‘Up and Down, marks each promotion and relegation with a parade through the village harbour.
« Laatst bewerkt op: apr 18, 2008, 00:22:45 door Han »
Strangely Devoted or Mentally Disturbed

Offline TeeZee

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Re: The Changing Face of the Dutch Ground Scene Part One
« Reactie #1 Gepost op: apr 18, 2008, 21:41:16 »
Om een klein beginnetje te maken:

Today, 18 sites form the Holland Casino Eredivisie, equivalent to the English Premier League, whilst  19 clubs compete in the Gouden Gids (Yellow Pages) Divisie. There is no relegation scheme to the non-league ranks YET. The country’s equivalent to the GMVConference is called Hoofdklasse Amateurs.

Moet worden:

Today, 18 sites form the Eredivisie, equivalent to the English Premier League, whilst 20 clubs compete in the Jupiler League (second step). There is no relegation scheme to the non-league ranks yet, but this will change in the near future. The country’s equivalent to the Blue Square Premier is called Hoofdklasse Amateurs (divided into Saturday and Sunday sections).

Zoiets?



Offline Han

  • Berichten: 2010
Re: The Changing Face of the Dutch Ground Scene Part One
« Reactie #2 Gepost op: apr 18, 2008, 23:27:41 »
Om een klein beginnetje te maken:

Today, 18 sites form the Holland Casino Eredivisie, equivalent to the English Premier League, whilst  19 clubs compete in the Gouden Gids (Yellow Pages) Divisie. There is no relegation scheme to the non-league ranks YET. The country’s equivalent to the GMVConference is called Hoofdklasse Amateurs.

Moet worden:

Today, 18 sites form the Eredivisie, equivalent to the English Premier League, whilst 20 clubs compete in the Jupiler League (second step). There is no relegation scheme to the non-league ranks yet, but this will change in the near future. The country’s equivalent to the Blue Square Premier is called Hoofdklasse Amateurs (divided into Saturday and Sunday sections).

Zoiets?





Met dank; deze redactie sluit naadloos aan op de 'oproep'. Beide stukken herlezend roept beelden op van monnikenwerk zie ik nu én dat de topictitel tussen 2004 en anno nu volledig doorgeacceleerd is. Nú schrijvende en redigerende staat er al weer een nieuwe ring in wording in Enschede; bij wijze van spreken.
Strangely Devoted or Mentally Disturbed

Offline hgrm

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Re: The Changing Face of the Dutch Ground Scene Part One
« Reactie #3 Gepost op: apr 19, 2008, 00:06:30 »
Citaat
Our stadium quest through Holland’s equivalent to The Premiership temporarily sojourns at FC Volendam, founded in 1920 as RKSV Volendam in this romantic and picturesque fisherman’s village on the borders of the Ijsselmeer Lake. Its partially redeveloped Veronica Stadion, once called De Dijk in its humble days of shallow covered stands and its open wooden end terraces, holds 6,000 seats to host the top flight’s newcomers. Incidentally, no other football club in Holland got promoted and relegated as frequently as FC Volendam. A purpose-built traditional fisherman’s boat, called ‘Heen en Weer’, best translated as ‘Up and Down, marks each promotion and relegation with a parade through the village harbour.

Dit stukje is dan wel weer topactueel
Laatste nieuwe stadion (516): De Groote Wielen - Rosmalen

Offline TeeZee

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Re: The Changing Face of the Dutch Ground Scene Part One
« Reactie #4 Gepost op: apr 19, 2008, 00:44:16 »
Op één puntje na dan, de Premiership heet sinds een jaartje of zo weer "gewoon" Premier League.