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By ESPN Staff

Eredivisie: Champions AZ slip further behind

AZ Alkmaar's stuttering defence of their Eredivisie title suffered another setback on Friday as they slumped to a 2-1 defeat at home to Vitesse Arnhem.

Moussa Dembele gave the hosts a ninth-minute advantage but they failed to kill off Vitesse, who won with second-half goals from Lasse Nilsson and Dalibor Stevanovic.

Both sides ended the game with ten men after Dembele and Stevanovic were sent off following a scuffle 11 minutes from time. The result leaves Ronald Koeman's team sixth, ten points behind third-placed Ajax who have a game in hand.

Sparta Rotterdam came from behind to steal a point after a topsy-turvy encounter with NAC Breda ended in a 2-2 draw.

The visitors took an undeserved lead through Erik Falkenburg before NAC turned the game around through Leonardo and Patrick Zwaanswijk. However, striker Rydell Poepon stole a point for his side with a sublime free-kick 16 minutes from time.

Roda JC failed to haul themselves out of the relegation zone as they were held to a 1-1 draw at home to fellow strugglers ADO Den Haag.

Mads Junker fired the hosts ahead after 35 minutes but Karim Soltani found the leveller for ADO after 57 minutes to ensure the points were shared. Roda had Arnaud Sutchuin Djoum sent off for a second booking 11 minutes from time.

VVV Venlo pulled clear of the drop zone after coming from behind to defeat Willem II 2-1.

Arjan Swinkels fired Willem II ahead after 66 minutes but Adil Auassar (80) equalised before Keisuke Honda smashed home a last-minute penalty to cap the fightback.

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