Feyenoord honored by some 150,000 frenzied fans
Between 140 thousand and 150 thousand supporters filled the streets of Rotterdam city center on Monday to honor Feyenoord and congratulate the team on its Eredivisie victory. The players appeared on the city hall balcony shortly after noon and joined the thousands of supporters singing You'll Never Walk Alone, led by Lee Powers, NOS reports.
"Eighteen years you waited. But you never gave up", captain Dirk Kuijt said to the crowd, according to NU.nl. Coach Giovanni van Bronkhorst emphasized how proud he is of everyone. "That we're here as Rotterdammers to experience this celebration with everything we have."
Kuijt scored all three goals that assured Feyenoord the title in the match against Heracles Almelo on Sunday. Fans showed their appreciation for the Feyenoord captain by taking to social media en masse and demanding that a statue be built of the footballer.
The ceremony was done around 12:30 p.m. and the Coolsingel slowly ran empty. An hour before the team arrived the police already called on fans to stop coming to Rotterdam city center because it was already full. The Stadhuisplein was at capacity by 9:00 a.m. already, and other spots where the ceremony was shown on big screens also quickly ran full. There were many kids in the crowd. A number of schools gave students the day off so they could attend the ceremony, according to NOS.
Rotterdam police chief Frank Paauw was not at all worried about the crowd. Many security measures were taken to make sure that all went well. A thousand police officers were on the streets and there were numerous roadblocks in strategic places.
Kuyt Standbeeld!!!!! 50 meter hoog!!! Op de Coolsingel!!! #FEYher— Mevrouw Van Vossen (@mevrvanvossen) May 14, 2017
Metselwerk standbeeld Kuyt begonnen #feyher— ralph (@ralphtweet) May 14, 2017
JAAAAA DIRK KUYT DE LEGENDEEE TRANENNNNNNN #feyher— Rabl (@RABL010) May 14, 2017