Excelsior Rotterdam

(Redirected from SBV Excelsior)

Excelsior Rotterdam, commonly known as Excelsior, is a Dutch professional football club based in Rotterdam, Netherlands. They play in the Eredivisie, the top tier of Dutch football from the 2022–23 season following promotion. The club was founded on 23 July 1902 and was formerly known as "Rotterdamse Voetbal en Atletiek Vereniging Excelsior" (Rotterdam Football and Athletics Club Excelsior). Excelsior's home stadium is the Stadion Woudestein – for sponsorship reasons known as the Van Donge & De Roo Stadion – which has a capacity of about 4,500, one of the smallest stadiums hosting professional football in the Netherlands.

Full nameExcelsior Rotterdam
Nickname(s)The Kralingers
Roodzwarten (red-blacks)
The Wonder
Oud papier-club (Paper recycling club)
Founded23 July 1902; 121 years ago (1902-07-23)
GroundVan Donge & De Roo Stadion
ChairmanBob de Lange
ManagerMarinus Dijkhuizen
LeagueEerste Divisie
2023–24Eredivisie, 16th of 18 (relegated via play-offs)
WebsiteClub website
Current season



Early history


Excelsior were officially formed on 23 July 1902 as Rotterdamse Voetbal en Atletiek Vereniging Excelsior (English: Rotterdam Football and Athletics Club Excelsior). However, the initial founders of the club, a group of close friends located in the Kralingen district of Rotterdam, were already playing their football matches together on the fields of the eighteenth century buitenplaats Woudesteyn. After the actual establishment of the club, the municipality officially gave permission to use the land.[2] As football was still an elite sport at the beginning of the 20th century, Excelsior became one of the first working class clubs in the Netherlands.[3]

First successes


In the season 1945–46, Excelsior gained their first success by promoting to the Eerste Klasse, the highest tier of Dutch football before professional football was introduced in 1954. The deciding match against VUC was played in De Kuip and attracted 52.000 spectators. Excelsior relegated in the next season, but managed to promote for the second time in the season 1951–52. After the introduction of professional football, Excelsior won the Eerste Divisie championship three times (1974, 1979 and 2006) and promoted to the Eredivisie various times, usually to relegate not long afterwards.

Excelsior once reached the KNVB Cup final in the season 1929–30, but lost the match to fellow Rotterdam club Feyenoord (0–1). Excelsior's biggest pre-war achievement was the win of the Zilveren Bal trophy. Excelsior beat Feyenoord (5–0) in the finals of the highly rated pre-season tournament.[3]

Founding father of Dutch professional football


In the mid-fifties, Excelsior were the leading club behind the introduction of professional football in the Netherlands. When the KNVB continued to refuse payments in football, Excelsior chairman Henk Zon and board member Aad Libregts managed to persuade association president Hans Hopster, in cooperation with the directors of Feyenoord, Sparta and ADO Den Haag. In August 1954 the KNVB accepted the proposal and professional football was introduced in the Netherlands.

Excelsior in the 1963–64 Season



Being the smallest professional club in Rotterdam, Excelsior always had to be creative to survive. This creativity made Excelsior play a pioneering role within Dutch football. In 1958 Excelsior became the first Dutch club with covered stands. Later, in 1974, Excelsior also were the first Dutch club with shirt advertising. Against the then existing rules, the club put an 'A' on the shirt. The character was supposed to stand for 'Team A', but in reality it stood for Akai, the company of main investor Rob Albers. The KNVB decided to ban the 'A' from the shirt and it would take until 1982 for shirt advertising to be introduced. Akai would adorn the shirts of Excelsior until the season 1999–00.[3]



In 2002, the year in which the club was officially 100 years old, Excelsior returned to the Eredivisie. They did this after spending more than 20 years in the second tier of Dutch football. They were relegated after one season. In the 2005/2006 season Excelsior became champions of the Eerste Divisie and were promoted back to the Eredivisie once again.

Between 1997 and 2005 Excelsior had a partnership with Rotterdam rivals Feyenoord. Excelsior became Feyenoord's satellite club. As such, Feyenoord gave Excelsior money and players (either on loan or free transfer).

A majority of the Excelsior fans have always been against a partnership with Feyenoord. Michel van der Neut, chairman of Excelsior's supporters club, claimed: "Excelsior sold her soul with the extended partnership. Excelsior simply stops existing this way."[4]

Recent history


In 2010 Excelsior returned to the highest tier of Dutch football, after defeating crosstown rival Sparta Rotterdam in the final of the Eredivisie promotion/relegation play-offs. The team was mostly composed by Feyenoord loanees and was coached by former Feyenoord youth coach Alex Pastoor. In the 2010–11 season Excelsior made a flying start in the Eredivisie, gaining ten points in its first five matches, including a home victory in the Rotterdam derby against Feyenoord (3–2). In the remainder of the season, Excelsior upset some of the larger league teams at home, winning against AZ and getting draws against Groningen and eventual league champions Ajax. In the final match of the regular season, Excelsior got a 4–1 win away at Vitesse Arnhem, a result that left them one goal short of staying up. Finishing 16th, Excelsior had to face FC Den Bosch and Helmond Sport in the relegation / promotion play-offs. A 4–2 home win against Helmond sport ensured another season of Eredivisie football for Excelsior.

Excelsior finished bottom of the table in the Eredivisie at the end of the 2011–12 season, managing only four wins in 34 matches. The club was again relegated to the Eerste Divisie and has had ups and downs since. In the 2022–23 season Excelsior will be playing in the Eredivisie after being relegated in 2019.[citation needed]

Eerste DivisieEredivisieEredivisieEerste DivisieEredivisieEerste DivisieEerste Divisie


Excelsior's home venue Stadion Woudestein

Excelsior's home venue is Stadion Woudestein, which has a capacity of 4,500 seats, one of the smallest stadiums hosting professional football in the Netherlands.

The club had two short spells at different locations. For the season 1907–1908 Excelsior played on the Afrikaanderplein. After returning to Woudestein, Excelsior moved to the Toepad terrain for seasons 1922–1939. When the Dutch government decided to build marine barracks on the Toepad area right before the start of the Second World War, Excelsior moved back to the familiar Woudestein.[3]

In the early nineties Excelsior went through a difficult period. The club barely survived a financial crisis, but a newly appointed board under the chairmanship of Martin de Jager had one important goal; a new Excelsior stadium. Various plans were made, one of them being a joint stadium for Excelsior and Sparta, but eventually none of the plans were implemented. Due to financial pressure, Excelsior decided to take the plunge and started renovating Woudestein themselves. The club built two new stands themselves and with the help of the municipality the main stand got renovated as well, including business seats and office space. On 31 July 2000, the new stadium was opened with a friendly match against Feyenoord.[5]

When Excelsior promoted to the Eredivisie after the season 2009–10, the club decided to replace the grass surface with artificial turf. Main reason for the change was the lack of financial resources to install under-soil heating, which is mandatory for clubs participating on the highest level of Dutch football.[6]

Supporters and rivalries


Paper recycling club


Excelsior is known as the Oud papier-club (paper recycling club), because former chairman Henk Zon often used to collect old paper in order to secure the financial position of the club.



Since 2008 'Woutje Stein' is the official Excelsior mascot. He is named after the Woudestein-stadium.



Rotterdam is the city with the most professional teams in the Netherlands. Besides Excelsior there are Feyenoord and Sparta Rotterdam.

Rivalry against Feyenoord


Ever since the clubs used to work together Excelsior players and supporters have grown a more serious rivalry against Feyenoord. The majority of Excelsior supporters never wanted a cooperation with Feyenoord in the first place. On 22 May 2009, Excelsior supporters hosted a funeral as they felt like their club's identity had died due to the partnership with Feyenoord.[7]

In 2017 Excelsior won against Feyenoord (3–0), resulting in the latter not winning the Eredivisie title on that day. This resulted in riots.[8]

Rivalry against Sparta


Excelsior is from the Kralingen-neighbourhood and Sparta Rotterdam is from the Spangen-neighbourhood. Both clubs are not always playing in the Eredivisie, hence they play matches against each other in both the Eredivisie and the Eerste Divisie. The Feyenoord partnership Excelsior had in the past has resulted in more hatred from Sparta Rotterdam supporters.

One of the more spectacular matches between Excelsior and Sparta was the 2010 derby. Excelsior managed to gain promotion to the Eredivisie by winning against Sparta in the 94th minute of the match.[9]





Domestic results

Historical chart of league performance

Below is a table with Excelsior's domestic results since the introduction of the Eredivisie in 1956.

Current squad

As of 1 February 2024

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
1 GK   NED Stijn van Gassel (captain)
2 DF   BEL Siebe Horemans
3 DF   NED Kik Pierie
4 DF   NED Redouan El Yaakoubi
5 DF   SWE Casper Widell
7 MF   GRE Lazaros Lamprou
8 MF   BEL Cisse Sandra (on loan from Club Brugge)
9 FW   IRL Troy Parrott (on loan from Tottenham Hotspur)
10 MF   NED Kenzo Goudmijn (on loan from AZ Alkmaar)
11 FW   SWE Oscar Uddenäs
12 DF   FRA Arthur Zagré
14 FW   MAR Couhaib Driouech
15 MF   NED Noah Naujoks
16 DF   NED Sven Nieuwpoort
No. Pos. Nation Player
17 FW   SWE Richie Omorowa
18 GK   NED Norbert Alblas
20 MF   NED Lennard Hartjes (on loan from Feyenoord)
21 FW   BEL Jacky Donkor
22 DF   NED Mimeirhel Benita (on loan from Feyenoord)
23 MF   NED Lance Duijvestijn
27 FW   NED Raphaël Eyongo
28 DF   NED Ian Smeulers
29 FW   NED Mike van Duinen
30 FW   NED Derensili Sanches Fernandes
33 MF   NED Julian Baas
34 DF   NED Serano Seymor
38 GK   NED Pascal Kuiper
MF   NED Yassin Ayoub

Out on loan


Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Pos. Nation Player
MF   NED Joshua Eijgenraam (at TOP Oss until 30 June 2024)

Player of the year


The Excelsior 'Player of the Year' award is voted for by the club's supporters, in recognition of the best overall performance by an individual player throughout the football season. The annual election is organized by the supporters club Pro Excelsior since 1996.[10][11]



Current staff

Position Name
Manager   Marinus Dijkhuizen
Assistant manager   André Hoekstra
Assistant manager / technology strategist   Takahisa Shiraishi
Team manager   Dennis van der Neut
Goalkeeping coach   Ronald Graafland
Fitness coach   Mario Meijer
Physio   Maurice de Groot
Physio   Rinus Kerskes
Club doctor   Robert Jan de Vos
Kit manager   Rien van Wijk
Kit manager   John van Tilburg
Chief scout   Dave Coelers
Scout   Bert Ebbens

Former managers


Former players


National team players


The following players were called up to represent their national teams in international football and received caps during their tenure with Excelsior Rotterdam:

  • Players in bold actively play for Excelsior Rotterdam and for their respective national teams. Years in brackets indicate careerspan with Excelsior.

National team players by Confederation


Member associations are listed in order of most to least amount of current and former Excelsior players represented Internationally

Total national team players by confederation
Confederation Total (Nation) Association
AFC 1   Japan (1)
CAF 5   Cape Verde (2),   DR Congo (1),   Ghana (1),   Guinea (1)
CONCACAF 6   Aruba (2),   Sint Maarten (2),   Curaçao (1),   Trinidad & Tobago (1)
OFC 0  
UEFA 9   Netherlands (4),   Iceland (3),   Ireland (2)

Players in international tournaments


The following is a list of Excelsior Rotterdam players who have competed in international tournaments, including the Africa Cup of Nations. To this date no Excelsior players have participated in the FIFA World Cup, UEFA European Championship, CONCACAF Gold Cup, AFC Asian Cup, Copa América or the OFC Nations Cup while playing for Excelsior.

Cup Players
  2015 Africa Cup of Nations   Toni Varela


  1. ^ "Cookies op AD.nl – AD.nl". www.ad.nl. Archived from the original on 12 March 2017. Retrieved 23 January 2019.
  2. ^ "De geschiedenis van Stadion Woudestein" [The history of Stadion Woudestein]. Supportersclub Pro Excelsior (in Dutch). Archived from the original on 26 May 2010. Retrieved 5 July 2010.
  3. ^ a b c d "Excelsior Historie" [Excelsior History]. Excelsior Rotterdam (in Dutch). Archived from the original on 26 February 2012. Retrieved 30 June 2010.
  4. ^ "Supportersvereniging roept op tot actie" [Supportersclub calls for action]. ERFC.nl (in Dutch). 21 May 2009. Archived from the original on 25 May 2009. Retrieved 2 July 2010.
  5. ^ "Excelsior Stadion" [Excelsior Stadium]. Excelsior Rotterdam (in Dutch). Archived from the original on 16 September 2013. Retrieved 21 August 2010.
  6. ^ "Excelsior op kunstgras in eredivisie" [Excelsior on artificial turf in Eredivisie]. Excelsior Rotterdam (in Dutch). 4 June 2010. Archived from the original on 28 July 2017. Retrieved 21 August 2010.
  7. ^ "Supportersvereniging roept op tot actie - Excelsior Rotterdam FC". www.erfc.nl. Archived from the original on 25 May 2009. Retrieved 30 June 2022.
  8. ^ "Rellen in Rotterdam na nederlaag Feyenoord bij Excelsior". 7 May 2017. Archived from the original on 5 April 2023. Retrieved 7 June 2022.
  9. ^ "Wedstrijdverslag op ELF Voetbal". Archived from the original on 8 June 2023. Retrieved 7 June 2022.
  10. ^ "Jeffrey Altheer beste speler 2008/2009" [Jeffrey Altheer best player 2008/2009]. ERFC.nl (in Dutch). 8 September 2009. Retrieved 5 July 2010. [dead link]
  11. ^ "Supportersclub". Pro Excelsior (in Dutch). Archived from the original on 26 September 2010. Retrieved 5 July 2010.