Founded In
Heerenveen, Netherlands

About Heerenveen

Sportclub Heerenveen was first established under the name Athleta in 1920 and the club first utilised the name Heerenveen in 1922. Heerenveen enjoy a unique popularity in the Netherlands and are sometimes referred to as every Dutchman's second favourite team. The club is also well known for being financially secure and generally well run. Their main rivals are FC Groningen and SC Cambuur.

In the 1940s, Heerenveen were involved in one of the most famous matches in the history of Dutch football. With less than half an hour remaining, the club trailed Ajax 5-1. Yet, remarkably, Heerenveen fought back and won the match 6-5. The match is still talked about to this day and is even the subject of a theatre play in the country.

During World War II, with the Netherlands under German occupation, Heerenveen established dominance in the Northern Netherlands league, winning the title in three straight years. Post-war success has been somewhat limited however. In 2009, Heerenveen lifted the KNVB Cup for the first time, defeating FC Twente in the final via a penalty shootout. The club's best ever Eredivisie performance came in the 1999-00 season, where they finished in second place, ahead of the likes of Ajax and Feyenoord.

Heerenveen's most legendary player is Abe Lenstra, who is also considered one of the all-time greats of Dutch football. Some of the other notable players to represent the club over the years include Dutch international strikers Ruud van Nistelrooy and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, Danish midfielder Jon Dahl Tomasson and Brazilian striker Afonso Alves.

The club plays its home matches at the Abe Lenstra Stadion, named after their legendary former player. The stadium was opened in 1994, at which time it held a maximum of 14,500 fans. Since that time, the ground has undergone significant development work, bringing its current capacity up to 26,800.   

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