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Excelsior is a football (soccer) club from Netherlands.

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About Excelsior

This article is about the Dutch club, 'Excelsior', for the Surinamese club of a similar name, see SV Excelsior

SBV Excelsior is a professional football (soccer) club from the Kralingen-Crooswijk district of Rotterdam, Netherlands. It was founded on July 23, 1902 and was formerly known as 'Rotterdamse Voetbal en Atletiek Vereniging Excelsior' (Rotterdam Football and Athletics Union Excelsior). The club was relegated from the top Dutch league, Eredivisie in 2007/08, and promoted back to the Eredivisie at the end of the 2009/10 season.

Excelsior used to be a satellite club of Feyenoord, where Excelsior received money and players (either on loan or free transfer) from Feyenoord. That system ended in 2005. The agreement was set up again in 2009, which resulted in the loan of several Feyenoord players to Excelsior for the 2009–10 season. Excelsior's home stadium is the Stadion Woudestein, which has a capacity of about 3,531, one of the smallest stadiums hosting professional football in the Netherlands.

The main rival of Excelsior is Sparta Rotterdam, another professional football team from Rotterdam.


Early history

Excelsior were officially formed on 23 July 1902 as Rotterdamse Voetbal en Atletiek Vereniging 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. 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.

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 (football club) was played in Feijenoord Stadion 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 1929–1930, 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. However, only five months later, Feyenoord and Excelsior agreed on an even more extensive partnership. As part of the new agreement, the clubs started a joint regional youth academy called Feyenoord Academy (Varkenoord) and merged the club's reserve teams. Also, Excelsior continued to be Feyenoord's feeder club. Excelsior's managing director Simon Kelder was pleased with the new extensive partnership: "I already regretted the earlier withdrawal of cooperation from Feyenoord, but now we get something better in return. It doesn't only reduces the costs, but I am also convinced both clubs will benefit on sportive grounds."

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."

Recent history

In 2010 Excelsior returned to the highest tier of Netherlands 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 Eredivisie 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, 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.

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from:01/01/1990 till:01/01/1991 shift:(0,-4) text:19
from:01/01/1991 till:01/01/1992 shift:(0,-4) text:15
from:01/01/1992 till:01/01/1993 shift:(0,-4) text:14
from:01/01/1993 till:01/01/1994 shift:(0,-4) text:12
from:01/01/1994 till:01/01/1995 shift:(0,-4) text:3
from:01/01/1995 till:01/01/1996 shift:(0,-4) text:16
from:01/01/1996 till:01/01/1997 shift:(0,-4) text:17
from:01/01/1997 till:01/01/1998 shift:(0,-4) text:16
from:01/01/1998 till:01/01/1999 shift:(0,-4) text:6
from:01/01/1999 till:01/01/2000 shift:(0,-4) text:4
from:01/01/2000 till:01/01/2001 shift:(0,-4) text:2
from:01/01/2001 till:01/01/2002 shift:(0,-4) text:2
from:01/01/2002 till:01/01/2003 shift:(0,-4) text:17
from:01/01/2003 till:01/01/2004 shift:(0,-4) text:2
from:01/01/2004 till:01/01/2005 shift:(0,-4) text:12
from:01/01/2005 till:01/01/2006 shift:(0,-4) text:1
from:01/01/2006 till:01/01/2007 shift:(0,-4) text:16
from:01/01/2007 till:01/01/2008 shift:(0,-4) text:18
from:01/01/2008 till:01/01/2009 shift:(0,-4) text:5
from:01/01/2009 till:01/01/2010 shift:(0,-4) text:3
from:01/01/2010 till:01/01/2011 shift:(0,-4) text:16

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from:01/01/2008 till:01/01/2010 color:bl2 shift:(0,13) text: "Eerste Divisie"
from:01/01/2010 till:01/01/2011 color:bl1 shift:(0,13) text: "Eredivisie"


Excelsior's home venue is Stadion Woudestein, which has a capacity of 3,531 seats, one of the smallest stadiums hosting professional football in the Netherlands.

The club had two short spells at different locations. For the season 1907–08 Excelsior played on the Afrikaanderplein. After returning to Woudestein, Excelsior moved to the Toepad terrain for seasons 1922–39. 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.

When Excelsior promoted to the Eredivisie after the season 2009–10 Eerste Divisie, 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.


As of 1 August 2011

For recent transfers, see List of Dutch football transfers summer 2011





Player of the year

The Excelsior 'Player of the Year' award is voted for by the clubs 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.

Notable players

The calm environment at Excelsior is a good atmosphere for young players to mature and gain experience. Also thanks to the partnership with Feyenoord, various notable players were once at the start of their career at Excelsior.

- Ronny Nouwen

- Brett Holman

- Volkan Kahraman

- Thomas Buffel
- Gill Swerts

- Michel Bastos

- Sebastián Pardo

- Patrick Mtiliga
- Jan Sørensen

- Christian Gyan
- Jordan Opoku
- Prince Polley

- David Connolly

Ivory Coast
- Salomon Kalou

- Takafumi Ogura

- Youssef El Akchaoui
- Mounir El Hamdaoui

Netherlands Antilles
- Chaly Jones
- Shelton Martis

The Netherlands
- Mario Been
- George Boateng
- Winston Bogarde
- Dries Boussatta
- Luigi Bruins
- Royston Drenthe
- Rinus Israel
- Wim Meutstege
- Oscar Moens
- Graeme Rutjes
- Cees Schapendonk
- Henk Schouten
- Andwélé Slory
- Gaston Taument
- Robin van Persie

South Korea
- Kim Nam-Il


Current staff

Notable managers

- Rinus Smits (1954–56)
- Bob Janse (1956–62)
- Rinus Smits (1962–67)
- Rinus Smits, Bob Janse (1967–68)
- Bob Janse (1968–69)
- Bob Janse, Jaap Kouters (1969–70)
- Bob Janse (1970–71)
- Joop Castenmiller (1970–73)
- Ben Peeters (1973–75)
- Thijs Libregts, Bob Janse (1975–76)
- Thijs Libregts (1976–80)
- Hans Dorjee (1980–82)
- Rob Jacobs (1982–86)

- Henk Wullems (1986–88)
- Joop van Daele (1988–89)
- Joop van Daele, Martin van der Kooy (1989–90)
- Sándor Popovics (1990–92)
- Cor Pot (1992–94)
- Rob Baan (1994–95)
- Hans van der Pluym (1995–96)
- Adrie Koster (1996–03)
- Henk van Stee (2003–04)
- John Metgod (2004–05)
- Mario Been (2005–06)
- Ton Lokhoff (2006–09)
- Alex Pastoor (2009–10)


- Eerste Divisie

- Tweede Divisie

- KNVB Cup

Domestic Results

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

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