NEC Nijmegen 2 – Ajax 4 (Eredivisie, January 18, 2009) (Longer highlights here.) After a goalless first half (highlights here) Ajax took the lead away at NEC when Miralem Sulejmani’s free-kick evaded everyone to nestle in the net. But NEC quickly levelled, Ramon Zomer heading the hosts level. (Sulejmani & Zomer’s goals here.) Sulejmani then put Ajax ahead only for El-Akchaoui to smash a ball into the near post for 2-2. Ajax lost Dario Cvitanich for a second bookable offense with 20 minutes remaining but they had enough in the locker to win the match with late goals from Fernandez and Gabri.
Volendam 0 – AZ Alkmaar 2 (Eredivisie, January 18, 2009) (Longer highlights here.) AZ remain three points clear at the top of the table after beating bottom side Volendam, the goals scored in either half from Ari and David Mendes da Silva.
Roda 1 – PSV 1 (Eredivisie, January 18, 2009) After a goalless first half where PSV had the better chances (highlights here) the visitors took the lead through a Tim Simmons penalty. But the lead only lasted 60 seconds as Willem Janssen quickly drew Roda level.
Sparta Rotterdam 1 – Groningen 1 (Eredivisie, January 18, 2009) Koen van de Laak gave Groningen the lead just after the break but Joey Godee rescued a point for the home side.
De Graafschap 1 – Willem II 0 (Eredivisie, January 17, 2009) On-loan Chelsea forward Ben Sahar netted De Graafschap’s first goal in more than 300 minutes of football to claim a crucial win, curling a glorious shot into the top corner.
Sporting Lisbon 5- Pacos Ferreira 1 (Carlsberg Cup, January 18, 2009) Sporting had to wait until the end of the first half to score, and when the goal arrived it looked to play out in slow motion as Liedson steered the ball past an unbalanced keeper. Liedson slid in the second on the restart, but Cristiano replied for Pacos. Back came Sporting, Marat Izmailov scoring a 30-yard stunner for the hosts, before Vukcevic and Liedson (hat-trick) sealed the win.
Vitoria Guimaraes 3 – Olhanense 0 (Carlsberg Cup, January 18, 2009)
Maritimo 1 – Rio Ave 2 (Carlsberg Cup, January 18, 2009)
Vitoria Setubal 1 – Nacional 0 (Carlsberg Cup, January 18, 2009)
Club Brugge 3 – KV Mechelen 0 (Jupiler League, January 17, 2009) Brugge’s victory was made that much easier by Mechelen having three players sent off in the match. Mununga was the first to depart after 27 minutes and the hosts quickly capitalised when Ronald Vargas opened the scoring. Antolin Alcaraz doubled just after the hour mark and a frantic finish saw Biset and Vrancken both dismissed with Simaeys netting the third.
Panathinaikos 4 – Aris 0 (Greek Super League, January 18, 2009) Karagounis put the hosts ahead with a penalty in the 47th minute, and he then stretched the lead to 2-0 with a powerful shot from outside the area in the 56th minute. Ninis crossed to Rukavina for the third and Cleyton scored from close range to complete the rout.
Hapoel Tel Aviv 2 – Ashdod SC 0 (Ligat ha’Al, January 17, 2009) The hosts took the lead six minutes from time when Shai Abutbul whacked the ball into the top corner from the edge of the box after being set up by Gili Vermuth. Vermuth had a huge hand in the second, too, riding a couple of challenges before squaring it to Samuel Yeboah to knock the ball into the roof of the net.