Feyenoord in Conference League finals after 20 years; "Unreal," coach says
Feyenoord qualified for a European club tournament final for the first time in 20 years. The Rotterdam team held against Olympique Marseille 0-0 in the second semi-final of the Conference League. That was enough to qualify after Feyenoord's 3-2 win a week earlier.
Feyenoord will face AS Roma in Tirana on Wednesday, May 25. AS Roma eliminated Leicester City in the other semi-final.
Feyenoord coach Arne Slot called making it to the final "unreal." "It feels like one of the many matches we won in this tournament this season. It is another step, but a very nice step. It has not completely sunk in yet," the coach said to Veronica.
"We knew this is a big game. We put in a lot of effort to get over the line," Slot continued. "We played more defensively and less attractively than in other matches. We hoped to put higher and more aggressive pressure in advance, but that was very difficult before half-time. That also has to do with the qualities of the opponent. In the second half, we came better in our game and increased our stopping power."
Slot liked to see the images of cheering Feyenoord supporters in Rotterdam. "We made them very proud. Not only because of the result but last Thursday in the home match. You sometimes need some luck to reach the final. Feyenoord against AS Roma is a nice poster for a final."
Striker Cyriel Dessers also found it unreal that his team made it to the final. "Who would have expected that at the start of the season? PSV will be waiting on Sunday, but we can have a small party now. We are going to the final in Tirana," he said to Veronica.
The French police arrested three Dutch fans before the match. One was detained in the Vieux Port (Old Port) for throwing objects at the police. The second was arrested at the stadium for trying to smuggle a smoke bomb into Stade Velodrome. And the police arrested a French man for attacking a Dutch fan. The Dutchman was also arrested.
Reporting by ANP