Highlighted: Experienced Utrecht Faces Newcomer Go Ahead Eagles

After victories against N.E.C. and Sparta Rotterdam, Go Ahead Eagles and FC Utrecht will face off at the Galgenwaard to determine who will be crowned the winner of the 2023/24 Eredivisie European Play-offs. Due to the new format of the Play-offs, the final will be decided in a single match for only the second time this century (previously in 2020/21).

Go Ahead Eagles Hunt for Historic First

FC Utrecht, favored due to their experience in the European Play-offs, struggled last Thursday until Victor Jensen's decisive goal against Sparta Rotterdam. Meanwhile, Go Ahead Eagles, who entered the Play-offs as the lowest-ranked team (9th), defeated the highest-ranked team in the semi-finals (N.E.C., 6th). This makes the team from Deventer the first to reach the final after finishing ninth in the regular season since RKC Waalwijk in 2011/12. Since the introduction of the current European Play-offs format in 2009, no team that finished so low in the regular season has ever qualified for European football. René Hake's Go Ahead Eagles, making their first appearance in the European Play-offs final, have the chance to make history.


Players Go Ahead Eagles celebrating goal against FC Utrecht (14-04-2024)

Ninth-Place Teams in the European Play-offs

Team Season Result

FC Utrecht


Uitgeschakeld in halve finale

Roda JC Kerkrade


Uitgeschakeld in finale

RKC Waalwijk


Uitgeschakeld in finale

sc Heerenveen


Uitgeschakeld in halve finale

Go Ahead Eagles



Specialists in European Play-offs

On the other hand, home team FC Utrecht is a regular fixture in the final of the European Play-offs. The Domstedelingen have been on the verge of European football qualification more often (8 times) than any other team. Additionally, they have Ron Jans, a specialist in these Play-offs, at the helm. After securing a ticket for the Conference League Play-offs with FC Twente last season and qualifying for the UEFA Cup Play-offs with FC Groningen in 2007, Jans is just one victory away from becoming the most successful coach in European Play-offs history. Currently, he shares this distinction with Dick Advocaat, Gertjan Verbeek, and John van den Brom (all with 2 victories each).

Sam Lammers and FC Utrecht Players Celebrate Goal Against Go Ahead Eagles (14-04-2024)

Final Appearances in the European Play-offs

Team Number

FC Utrecht




FC Groningen


AZ, sc Heerenveen, N.E.C., FC Twente, Ajax


Victories in the European Play-offs

Trainer Number

Ron Jans


Dick Advocaat


Gertjan Verbeek


John van den Brom


Watch the Final Live on Sunday at 18:00 on ESPN!

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