Cocu said goodbye to the fans

26 juli 2009 10:00
Former PSV captain Phillip Cocu got a final chance to say goodbye to the PSV fans when the club hosted a memorial game at the Philips Stadium on Saturday night. A 26,000 crowd revelled in seeing some of PSV’s greats play in an entertaining match against Team Cocu.

Team Cocu fielded some legendary players. Team Cocu fielded some legendary players.

Cocu bowed out of football

The genuine PSV supporters thoroughly enjoyed themselves as Phillip Cocu, who scored the decisive goal on 29 April 2007 which saw PSV retain the Eredivisie title after all on the last day of a nerve-racking season, bowed out of football as a player. Guus Hiddink took charge as coach of team Cocu that consisted mainly of great stars. The summer sun was shining brightly and a substantial sum of money was raised for the Asthma Foundation after the players had been presented one by one. Many of Cocu’s friends had pulled the curtain over their eventful careers some time ago and others quit football more recently. Luis Figo, Mark van Bommel, Patrick Kluivert and, after the break, Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink, Jefferson Farfán and Edgar Davids were some of the names to make an appearance at the Philips Stadium. The former stars certainly showed their skills. Kluivert delivered an awesome cross for Figo to blast home a sensational opening goal. And the older PSV diehards enjoyed the presence of the legendary Arthur Numan, Wim Jonk, Chris van der Weerden and Ronald Waterreus to the Philips Stadium as Cocu had his testimonial, in the presence of his relatives, friends and fans, an event inarguably one to remember.

One of the stars, Luís Figo, vies for the ball with Orlando Engelaar. One of the stars, Luís Figo, vies for the ball with Orlando Engelaar.

Cocu applauded long and loud

The two teams put on a good show and the crowd were also treated to a number of fine goals. Amrabat leveled the score in the 32nd minute with a superb goal. The second half saw both teams make many substitutions. A goal scored by Afellay seven minutes into the second half gave PSV the lead after which Koevermans and Lazovic extended their side’s lead. The stadium erupted fifteen minutes from time when Farfán was ‘fouled’ in the penalty area and referee Luinge immediately pointed to the spot. Cocu himself stepped up to convert the resulting spot kick but he only hit the post. But of course it did not spoil the party. Team Cocu continued to make changes, with Zenden, Overmars, De Boer and De Jong being taken off. Ooijer and Afellay even took time to swap shirts, to the delight of everybody present. Lazovic made it 5-1, but the day was obviously all about one man and Cocu was given a rousing send-off when his three sons showed the No 8 sign on the touchline. It was applauded long and loud by the legends on the pitch as well as the crowd. Cocu was then carried shoulder high during a lap of honour by Stam and Kluivert.


Harry van Raaij speech

Harry van Raaij made a speech after the game and the former PSV Chairman referred to Cocu as one of the best midfielders in Europe. He also admitted that he thought that Cocu was not the best penalty taker ever, which raised a big smile on the face of Cocu. “You have always been inspirational for PSV, both on and off the field”, said Van Raaij, while Cocu, his wife Karin and their three sons were standing at the centre circle. “I am sure I speak for all football lovers. We are very grateful for all that you have done. You’ve always been a true team player and we are confident you will be a great coach.” After exchanging a warm hug with Van Raaij, Cocu made an emotional speech, giving thanks to the fans and players that had put in a lot effort to come to Eindhoven. would also like to thank Phillip! We wish you well!


Match details:

Venue: Philips Stadion, Eindhoven.
Attendance: 26.000.

Goals: (8) Figo 0-1; (32) Amrabat 1-1; (52) Afellay 2-1; (71) Koevermans 3-1; (72) Lazovic 4-1; ; (82) Lazovic 5-1.
(74) Cocu misses penalty.

PSV line-up:
Isaksson (46, Cássio Ramos), Salcido, Simons (63, Bakkal), Toivonen (63, Koevermans), Amrabat (55, Lazovic), Pieters, Engelaar, Afellay (76, Méndez), Dzsudzsák (81, Nijland), Ooijer (76, Wuytens) and Marcellis.
Substitutes: Cássio, Kromkamp, Méndez, Lazovic, Koevermans, Wuytens, Nijland, Zhou, Bakkal, Heerkens and Jonathan.

Team Cocu line-up:
Waterreus (55, Zoet), Reiziger (73, Van der Weerden), Stam (60, Faber), F. de Boer (46, Vennegoor of Hesselink), Numan (46, Zenden), Van Bommel (46, Davids), Figo (60, Bergkamp), Cocu (84, Wouters), Kluivert (46, Farfán, (76, Ooijer), Bergkamp (33, Jonk, (81, De Jong)) and Overmars (76, Afellay).

Referee: Roelof Luinge.


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