Dirk Kuyt says he "understands the emotions" of unhappy supporters after Feyenoord fell to their fourth successive Eredivise defeat, losing 2-1 at home to Heerenveen on Thursday.
Dirk Kuyt says he "understands the emotions" of unhappy supporters after Feyenoord fell to their fourth successive Eredivisie defeat, losing 2-1 at home to Heerenveen on Thursday.
The Rotterdam club’s disappointing run of results has seen them fall away from the title race into third position and now trail leaders Ajax by 12 points.
Kuyt, who has turned back the years to score 13 times in the league this year, says he sympathises with the fans and admits Feyenoord may have lost the chance to lift their first league title since 1999.
"I understand the emotions of the supporters, which I am one myself," the 35-year-old told Fox Sports.
"De Kuip [Feyernoord’s stadium] was still completely full. I hate it. It's terrible that we have suffered defeats and have been unable to rectify this in the past few weeks. This is a shame.
"In this case, we have thrown our season away. But we have to keep looking ahead to Sunday at home against ADO Den Haag."
Kuyt says the team’s confidence has taken a big hit over the past month, with poor performances and results only worsening the damage.
"We want the confidence of the fans to recover but we have failed," the former Liverpool winger added.
"The contrast between the first half of the competition is so big. If you see how in October we beat Heerenveen 5-2 and then compare that to this match, it is unbelievable."
Giovanni van Bronckhorst echoed Kuyt's sentiments, claiming the confidence of the players had completely vanished.
"We are in a difficult phase," the Feyenoord coach said in an interview with De Telegraaf.
"The confidence is completely gone. We saw that after we were 1-0 behind.
"I cannot blame the team [and say] that they did not fight. The only thing that we can do now is to work hard to leave this period as soon as possible."