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Review of the first period of the season (

20 dec 2004 - Source:

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Now that the first period of the season is over, the PSV squad can enjoy a well-deserved Christmas holiday. They can start the festive season in a good mood. Although they slipped to a 0-2 defeat against Roda JC last Saturday night, they are on top of the Eredivisie, having collected the same number of points as joint leaders AZ. They will be back on duty on 5 January 2005, when they are to report at the training ground de Herdgang for their first training session in the new year.Guus Hiddink fielded 22 players in seventeen domestic league games and eight UEFA Champions League ties (including the preliminary round against Red Star Belgrade).Remco van der Schaaf (ankle injury), Eric Addo and Arvid Smit are the only first team regular players that were not granted any playing time. Nathan Coe, Michael Jakobsen and Jurgen Colin, Jasar Takak and Otman Bakkal (who are all having loan spells) did not make an appearance in the first team, either.Young-Pyo Lee is the only player that played all games for the full 90 minutes. So far the South Korean has not missed any league games or UEFA Champions League ties. He was never booked and scored the crucial opening goal in the game, at home against Ajax. PSV eventually recorded a 2-0 win; it was the first goal ever Lee scored in the service of PSV. Excellent goal differenceJan Vennegoor of Hesselink is PSV top scorer. Although he picked up a nasty shoulder injury the other day, the tall striker has netted nine goals so far. He scored seven goals in league games and he found the net twice in UEFA Champions League encounters. PSV players scored 42 goals in domestic league games and they netted thirteen goals in all of their UEFA Champions League games. DaMarcus Beasley and John de Jong scored most goals in European games: they both found the net three times. PSV conceded the smallest number of goals in the domestic league: ten. Half of them were scored in the last two games before the mid-winter break against Feyenoord (3) and Roda JC (2). One of the highlights of the first period of the season was obviously breaking the Ajax record of the 1970-1971 season. PSV have set a new record by keeping a clean sheet for as many as 1159 minutes.Two red cardsPSV were given their first red card on the final matchday before the winter break. Alex was shown a red card for hacking down Roda JC forward Arouna Koné. Earlier this season Ji-Sung Park was sent off, away at Rosenborg BK, after he had been booked for the second time. PSV players saw yellow 22 times and they were booked nine times in the Champions League clashes. Mark van Bommel got most yellow cards, but of all players he played most games. Young-Pyo Lee was the only player that made more appearances on the pitch than his captain. Few differences with last seasonPSV are doing slightly better than last season. PSV collected ten points in the Champions League, just like in the 2003-2004 campaign, but this year it was enough to qualify. In the Dutch league PSV have earned 42 points from their seventeen league games; at he beginning of the winter break last year the Eindhoven team had collected 37 points from sixteen league games. PSV were also runners up in the table, having collected the same number of points as then leaders Ajax, who had one game in hand at that time. The goal difference in the 2003-2004 season after sixteen games was 44-13, which is not really different from the current goal difference.