Excelsior has graced the return to the Eredivisie with a victory over SC Cambuur. Thanks to two goals before half-time and the outstanding goalkeeper Stijn van Gassel, the Rotterdam team triumphed in Leeuwarden 2-0. Marouan Azarkan and Julian Baas scored the goals on the Frisian artificial grass.
Excelsior returned to the Eredivisie via the play-offs after three years last season. In the final against ADO Haag, the team of coach Marinus Dijkhuizen came back from a 3-0 deficit and won via penalties.
Cambuur has never been able to start the eight previous seasons at the highest level with a victory and that did not work against Excelsior either. Robin Maulun lost the ball after 10 minutes on a corner by Cambuur, after which Excelsior quickly came out via Azarkan. After a combination with Couhaib Driouech, Azarkan shot the ball past keeper João Virgínia. Shortly before the break it was 0-2 when Baas tapped in a hard cross from Siebe Horemans just before the goal line via Cambuur player Mees Hoedemakers.
The home team created a large number of opportunities in the second half, but Cambuur was unable to pass the outstanding Van Gassel. For example, substitute Remco Balk shot at the feet of the keeper and Roberts Uldrikis headed the ball wide just in front of the goal.