Goal.com picks out the best talent from the first-half of the season in Netherlands' top flight, with Vitesse dominating our selectionUtrecht goalkeeper Robbin Ruiter has been one of the surprise packages of the past six months.
The goalkeeper has not missed a single game for the Domstedelingen and has been in fine form. He may have kept just three clean sheets, but that is down to his inexperienced defence rather than his individual quality.
Tomas Kalas gets the nod at right-back following a string of impressive displays. The Czech Republic international featured at centre-back last term, but was moved to the right by head coach Fred Rutten. Vitesse have conceded only 16 goals so far, and Kalas has played a large part in his side's success.
Georgia star Guram Kashia joins his team-mate in defence. Not only did the 25-year-old lead by example, but his accurate passing from the back has been vital for Vitesse's attacking play. Kashia forms a partnership with Feyenoord youngster Bruno Martins Indi. The defender has developed into one of the stars of the league, and even made his debut for Netherlands earlier this year. Chelsea loanee Patrick van Aanholt completes the four-man defence. The left-back has impressed both at the back and when marauding forward, and has become an integral part of Vitesse.
It will not be much of a surprise that Michael de Leeuw makes the cut in midfield. Groningen have been struggling to find their best form, but De Leeuw has never let his side down. The highlight of his season so far has been the hat-trick against Roda. Kevin Strootman's leadership skills made him stand out for PSV, and he has perhaps even been more important than seasoned captain Mark van Bommel. The former Sparta man has been equally impressive for Oranje, and has even been named deputy-skipper for the national side. Perhaps the biggest surprise of the past six months has been Vitesse youngster Marco van Ginkel. The 20-year-old made his Netherlands debut in the friendly against Germany last month, and the versatile midfielder has contributed heavily to Vitesse's success with his goals and assists.
Jeremain Lens has caused his opponents all kinds of trouble throughout the first-half of the season. The versatile attacker has scored four goals so far and created seven more. The Eredivisie's leading goalscorer Wilfried Bony is another attacker who thoroughly deserves a spot in the team of the season. The Cote d'Ivoire international has been in prolific form, netting 16 goals in 17 games, and his performances have resulted in interest from some of Europe's top clubs. And our final inclusion is Graziano Pelle. The Italian striker previously failed to impress in the Eredivisie at AZ, but he has made the Feyenoord faithful forget about last year's hero John Guidetti with his sublime displays.
|Games: 17 Cln Sheets: 3
|Games: 17 Cln Sheets: 8
||Games: 17 Cln Sheets: 8
||Games: 16 Cln Sheets: 4
||Games: 16 Cln Sheets: 8
|Games: 15 Goals: 7
||Games: 17 Goals: 5
||Games: 17 Goals: 4
|Games: 17 Goals: 4
||Games: 17 Goals: 16
||Games: 13 Goals: 12|