Netherlands - List of Second and Third Division Champions

Only in 1956/57 a unified national league, called "eredivisie", was installed in the Netherlands, two years after professionalism had been introduced. Originally two levels of professional football existed below the eredivisie, the "eerste divisie" (which literally translates as "first division") and "tweede divisie" (second division). Both were sometimes played in one, sometimes in two groups.

At the end of the 1970/71 season, the second division was abolished after it had been found that too many teams had been allowed to turn professional in the fifties. Over the years, several had voluntarily returned to the amateur leagues, some had been relegated, and on two occasions teams had been promoted as amateur champions to the professional section (Xerxes and Velox). In 1970/71 many of the remaining small clubs, which were deemed incapable of sustaining in professional football, were forced to return to the amateurs and only two divisions (eredivisie and eerste divisie) of professional football remained, both played in one group. Since then, the number of professional teams has varied from 34 to 41, teams occasionally going bust or (from the eighties) being admitted to professional football when meeting certain criteria (R.B.C., R.K.C., Emmen, T.O.P. and V.C. Vlissingen - the last team folding after two unsuccessful seasons).

In 1972/73 a special promotion regulation was introduced: teams that had been the best in an (usually) eight game "period" were allowed to fight for (usually) one promotion place in an end-of-the-season playoff called "nacompetitie".

Below all the group winners of the Eerste and Tweede Divisie since 1956/57 are listed. From 1972/73 onwards, winners of the nacompetitie (obtaining promotion) are listed as well.

Eerste Divisie Champions

1956/57 A.D.O. and Blauw Wit
1957/58 Willem II and S.H.S.
1958/59 Volendam and Sittardia
1959/60 G.V.A.V. and Alkmaar
1960/61 Volendam and Blauw Wit
1961/62 Heracles and Fortuna Vlaardingen                                       [1]
1962/63 D.W.S.
1963/64 Sittardia
1964/65 Willem II
1965/66 Sittardia
1966/67 Volendam
1967/68 Holland Sport
1968/69 S.V.V.
1969/70 Volendam                        
1970/71 F.C. Den Bosch                  Nacompetitie Winners
1971/72 Haarlem                              
1972/73 Roda J.C.                       De Graafschap
1973/74 Excelsior                       Wageningen
1974/75 N.E.C.                          Eindhoven
1975/76 Haarlem                         F.C. V.V.V.
1976/77 Vitesse                         Volendam
1977/78 P.E.C. Zwolle                   M.V.V.
1978/79 Excelsior                       Willem II
1979/80 F.C. Groningen                  Wageningen
1980/81 Haarlem                         De Graafschap
1981/82 Helmond Sport                   Excelsior
1982/83 D.S. '79                        F.C. Den Bosch
1983/84 M.V.V.                          N.A.C.
1984/85 Heracles                        N.E.C.
1985/86 F.C. Den Haag                   Veendam
1986/87 Volendam                        D.S. '79
1987/88 R.K.C.                          M.V.V.
1988/89 Vitesse                         N.E.C.
1989/90 S.V.V.                          Heerenveen
1990/91 De Graafschap                   V.V.V.
1991/92 Cambuur Leeuwarden              B.V.V. Den Bosch                       [2]
1992/93 V.V.V.                          Heerenveen and N.A.C.                  [3]
1993/94 Dordrecht '90                   N.E.C. and R.K.C.                      [3]
1994/95 Fortuna Sittard                 De Graafschap and Go Ahead Eagles      [3]
1995/96 A.Z.                            Volendam and N.E.C.                    [3]
1996/97 M.V.V.                          R.K.C. and N.E.C.                      [3]
1997/98 A.Z.                            R.K.C. and Cambuur Leeuwarden          [3]
1998/99 F.C. Den Bosch                  R.K.C. and Sparta                      [3]
1999/00 N.A.C.                          F.C. Groningen and R.B.C. Roosendaal   [3]
2000/01 F.C. Den Bosch                  Fortuna Sittard and Sparta             [3]
2001/02 F.C. Zwolle                     R.B.C. Roosendaal and Excelsior        [3]
2002/03 A.D.O. Den Haag                 F.C. Zwolle and Volendam               [3]
2003/04 F.C. Den Bosch                  Vitesse and De Graafschap              [3]
2004/05 Heracles Almelo                 R.B.C. Roosendaal and Sparta Rotterdam [3]
2005/06 Excelsior                       N.A.C. Breda and Willem II             [3]
2006/07 De Graafschap                   Excelsior and V.V.V.-Venlo             [3]
2007/08 F.C. Volendam                   De Graafschap and A.D.O. Den Haag      [3]
2008/09 V.V.V.-Venlo                    Roda J.C. and R.K.C. Waalwijk           [3]
2009/10 De Graafschap                   Willem II and Excelsior                [3]
2010/11 R.K.C. Waalwijk                  Excelsior and V.V.V.-Venlo             [3]
2011/12 F.C. Zwolle                     V.V.V.-Venlo and Willem II             [3]
2012/13 S.C. Cambuur (Leeuwarden)       Roda J.C. and Go Ahead Eagles          [3]
2013/14 Willem II                       F.C. Dordrecht and Excelsior           [3]
2014/15 N.E.C.                          Roda J.C. and De Graafschap
2015/16 Sparta Rotterdam                Willem II and Go Ahead Eagles          [3]
2016/17 V.V.V.-Venlo 

[1] Heracles and Fortuna Vlaardingen played a decisive match for promotion, won by 
    Heracles.  Fortuna remained in the eerste divisie.  They are therefore not counted 
    as "Eerste Divisie" Champions in the following list.  In other years, no matches
    between group winners were played to decide the championship or promotion.
[2] From 1991/92 on, the nacompetitie was played in two groups.  In 1991/92, the second
    group was won by Go Ahead Eagles who then lost the promotion playoff against Den 
    Bosch.  (They obtained promotion nonetheless by beating eredivisie side F.C. Den Haag.)
[3] From 1992/93 on, eredivisie sides finishing just above the automatic relegation spot 
    had to fight for their survival in a nacompetitie group.  Teams given in italics
    were eredivisie sides who managed to retain their place in the nacompetitie.

List of Eerste Divisie Champions (66)

 6 F.C. Volendam [includes Volendam]

 4 F.C. Den Bosch

 3 A.D.O. Den Haag [includes A.D.O. (Den Haag) and F.C. Den Haag]
 3 A.Z. (Alkmaar) [includes Alkmaar]
 3 Excelsior (Rotterdam)
 3 De Graafschap (Doetinchem)
 3 Haarlem
 3 Heracles Almelo [includes Heracles (Almelo)]
 3 Sittardia (Sittard)
 3 V.V.V.-Venlo [includes V.V.V. (Venlo)]
 3 Willem II (Tilburg)
 3 F.C. Zwolle [includes P.E.C. Zwolle]

 2 Blauw Wit (Amsterdam)
 2 S.C. Cambuur (Leeuwarden) [includes Cambuur Leeuwarden]
 2 F.C. Groningen (includes G.V.A.V. (Groningen)]
 2 Holland Sport (Den Haag) [includes S.H.S. (Den Haag)]
 2 M.V.V. (Maastricht)
 2 N.E.C. (Nijmegen)
 2 R.K.C. Waalwijk [includes R.K.C. (Waalwijk)]
 2 S.V.V. (Schiedam)
 2 Vitesse (Arnhem)

 1 Dordrecht '90           [**]
 1 D.S. '79 (Dordrecht)
 1 D.W.S. (Amsterdam)
 1 Fortuna Sittard
 1 Helmond Sport
 1 N.A.C. (Breda)
 1 Roda J.C. (Kerkrade)
 1 Sparta Rotterdam

 [**] Technically Dordrecht '90 should be considered the successor of
      S.V.V., as they took over their (eredivisie) license when S.V.V.
      and D.S. '79 merged.  However, they play at the former D.S. '79
      ground.  I have therefore listed them as an independent entity.

List of Nacompetitie Winners (68)

 6 Excelsior (Rotterdam)       [2 times as first level team]
 6 De Graafschap (Doetinchem)  [1 time as first level team]

 5 N.E.C. (Nijmegen)            [2 times as first level team]
 5 R.K.C. Waalwijk              [4 times as first level team] [includes R.K.C. (Waalwijk)]
 5 V.V.V.-Venlo                [2 times as first level team] [includes (F.C.) V.V.V. (Venlo)]
 5 Willem II (Tilburg)         [3 times as first level team]

 3 Go Ahead Eagles (Deventer)  [1 time as first level team]
 3 N.A.C. Breda                [1 time as first level team]
 3 R.B.C. Roosendaal           [1 time as first level team]
 3 Roda J.C. (Kerkrade)        [2 times as first level team]
 3 Sparta Rotterdam            [2 times as first level team]
 3 Volendam                    [1 time as first level team]

 2 F.C. Den Bosch [includes B.V.V. Den Bosch]
 2 Heerenveen
 2 M.V.V. (Maastricht)
 2 Wageningen

 1 A.D.O. Den Haag
 1 Cambuur Leeuwarden
 1 F.C. Dordrecht
 1 D.S. '79 (Dordrecht)
 1 Eindhoven
 1 Fortuna Sittard             [as first level team]
 1 F.C. Groningen
 1 Veendam
 1 Vitesse (Arnhem)            [as first level team]
 1 F.C. Zwolle                 [as first level team]

Tweede Divisie Champions

1956/57 Leeuwarden and R.B.C.
1957/58 Z.F.C. and Heracles
1958/59 't Gooi and Go Ahead
1959/60 E.D.O. and Be Quick
1960/61 Haarlem
1961/62 Velox
1962/63 V.S.V. and Haarlem                   [*]
1963/64 N.E.C. and Alkmaar                   [**]
1964/65 S.C. Cambuur and D.F.C.              [***]
1965/66 Vitesse and F.C. Den Bosch
1966/67 Haarlem
1967/68 Wageningen
1968/69 De Graafschap
1969/70 Heerenveen
1970/71 De Volewijckers

  [*] Haarlem lost the promotion match against V.S.V. and missed out on
      promotion in an ensuing playoff.  They are therefore not listed as
      a "Tweede Divisie" Champion below.
 [**] Alkmaar lost the promotion match against N.E.C.  They later gained
      promotion in a playoff nevertheless, but are not listed as a "Tweede
      Divisie" Champion below.
[***] D.F.C. lost the promotion match against S.C. Cambuur and missed out
      on promotion.  They are not listed as a "Tweede Divisie" Champion

In all other seasons featuring two groups, no matches were played for
promotion or championship between the two winners.

List of Tweede Divisie Champions (20)

 2 S.C. Cambuur (Leeuwarden) [includes Leeuwarden]
 2 Haarlem

 1 Be Quick (Groningen)
 1 F.C. Den Bosch
 1 E.D.O. (Haarlem)
 1 Go Ahead (Deventer)
 1 't Gooi (Hilversum)
 1 De Graafschap (Doetinchem)
 1 Heerenveen
 1 Heracles (Almelo)
 1 N.E.C. (Nijmegen)
 1 R.B.C. (Roosendaal)
 1 Velox (Utrecht)
 1 Vitesse (Arnhem)
 1 De Volewijckers (Amsterdam)
 1 V.S.V. (Velsen)
 1 Wageningen
 1 Z.F.C. (Zaandam)

Topklasse Champions

2010/11 IJsselmeervogels (Spakenburg) and F.C. Oss
2011/12 Achilles'29 (Groesbeek) and Spakenburg
2012/13 Katwijk and Achilles'29 (Groesbeek)
2013/14 Spakenburg and A.F.C. (Amsterdam)
2014/15 FC Lienden and Kozakken Boys (Werkendam)

About this document

Prepared and maintained by Karel Stokkermans for the Rec.Sport.Soccer Statistics Foundation

Author: Karel Stokkermans
Last updated: 4 May 2017

(C) Copyright Karel Stokkermans and RSSSF 1995/2017
You are free to copy this document in whole or part provided that proper acknowledgement is given to the author. All rights reserved.