PSV Eindhoven is one of the three most prominent clubs in the Netherlands, along with Ajax and Feyenoord. The club has played in the Eredivisie since its inception in 1956. Throughout the years, PSV established itself as a stepping stone for future world class players like Ruud Gullit, Ronald Koeman, Romario, Ronaldo, Phillip Cocu, Jaap Stam, Ruud van Nistelrooy, Arjen Robben, Georginio Wijnaldum and Memphis Depay.
PSV was known for producing many talented strikers who reaped success in Europe with other clubs. Let’s take a look at the top strikers who had great success in Netherlands:
Ruud van Nistelrooy
Van Nistelrooy is often considered one of the best strikers of his generation. He has been the top scorer in three separate UEFA Champions League seasons and is the sixth-highest goalscorer in the competition’s history with 56 goals. He has also been the top scorer in three different European domestic leagues.
He started his career with Dutch Eerste Divisie side Den Bosch. After netting 12 goals in 31 games in the 1996–97 campaign, he transferred to Heerenveen the next year and scored 13 goals in 31 matches in his only season with the club. He was then signed by PSV Eindhoven the next season for 6.3 million euros, a then-record transfer sum between two Dutch teams.
He scored 31 goals in 34 matches, the highest season total in the Eredivisie and second-highest in Europe overall, in addition to scoring all three of PSV’s goals in a Champions League match against HJK Helsinki on 25 November 1998. Van Nistelrooy capped off the year by winning the Dutch Player of the Year award. He won his second Eredivisie scoring title with 29 goals the following season.
Mateja Kezman can be considered as one of the best strikers of PSV. But after moving from PSV, he was labelled as a flop. In the summer of 2000, Kezman completed his move to Dutch club PSV. He was the league’s top scorer in his debut season, achieving 24 goals in 33 games as PSV won the title. He also picked up the nickname ‘Batman’ because the famous theme song was played at Philips Stadion every time he scored. He formed a successful partnership with Arjen Robben, and they gained the epithet ‘Batman and Robben’, a pun on Batman and Robin.
Kezman went to score 81 goals over the following three seasons with PSV. His best season in terms of both goals and appearances was 2002–03, when he played 33 out of 34 of PSV’s matches and scored 35 goals to help them win the title.
Romario is one of the best clinical strikers football has ever seen. He became a star during the 1988 Olympics football tournament. He was the top scorer.
Shortly after the Olympics, he moved to PSV Eindhoven, where he won the Eredivisie in 1989, 1991 and 1992. Renowned for his ability to operate in the confined space of the penalty box, Romario scored 165 goals in 167 games in five seasons at PSV.