Australians abroad: Holman scores on return for AZ Alkmaar, Rhys Williams back from injury early

Socceroo Brett Holman continued his fine 2011-12 form and maintained AZ Alkmaar's fading title hopes with a strike in their 2-1 triumph over VVV Venlo in the Dutch Eredivisie on Sunday.

Holman, returning after suspension and injury, forced a good save from the VVV keeper in the first-half, before he broke the deadlock two minutes into the second 45.

The Australia international fired in a fine low shot from beyond the box after Adam Maher's layoff to make it 1-0. VVV would respond through Quin Kruijsen on 59 minutes, but Jozy Altidore headed home the winner six minutes later.

After netting his eighth strike of the campaign in all competitions, Holman was replaced with 10 minutes to play. AZ remain in second, six points behind leaders Ajax with three games to play.

In England's Championship, Rhys Williams made an early return from an ankle injury which had kept him out since early March, as Middlesbrough kept alive their promotion hopes with a 2-1 win over Southampton.

Williams was a 59th-minute substitute in the victory, which leaves Boro two points behind sixth-placed Cardiff City with one game to play in their bid to make the playoffs.

Scott McDonald played 59 minutes in attack for Boro, but had little effect before being replaced.

Elsewhere, Adam Federici played his part, making two good early second-half saves, as promoted Reading clinched the Championship title with a 2-2 draw against Crystal Palace.

England
Tim Cahill (Everton): Came off the bench as an 83rd-minute substitute in his side's remarkable 4-4 draw at Manchester United. Helped hold out United's late surge.
Chris Herd (Aston Villa): Played a full game on his return from a nasty head injury. Was a solid contributor in a defensive midfield role in the 0-0 draw with Sunderland.
Brad Jones (Liverpool): Returned to the sidelines as Liverpool went down 1-0 to West Bromwich at home.
Mark Schwarzer (Fulham): Had a relatively quiet game but made the saves required of him when called upon, including a sharp low save from Jordi Gomez's effort, as Fulham defeated Wigan 2-1.
Richard Garcia (Hull City): Put in a full shift in attack as his side defeated Nottingham Forest 2-1.
Mile Jedinak (Crystal Palace): Out injured (groin) for the 2-2 draw with Reading.
Neil Kilkenny (Bristol City): Was a half-time substitute in the 2-0 win over Barnsley which secured his side's Championship status for another season.
Paddy Kisnorbo (Leeds United): Out injured (knee) for the 1-1 draw at Cardiff City.
Shane Lowry (Millwall): Put in a full shift in defence in the 3-0 away win at Ipswich Town.
Dean Bouzanis (Oldham): Played a full game in the 1-1 draw with Preston.
Alex Cisak (Oldham): Out injured (shoulder) for the draw with Preston.
James Wesolowski (Oldham): Out injured (shoulder) for the draw with Preston.
Bailey Wright (Preston): Put in a full shift in the draw at Oldham.

Germany

STAR OF THE WEEKEND
Brett Holman



He picked up where he left off before his recent injury, with a fine attacking display and strike helping keep alive AZ's title hopes


Mitchell Langerak 
(Borussia Dortmund): Was on the bench as his side clinched the German title after a 2-0 victory over Borussia Monchengladbach.
Mathew Leckie (Borussia Monchengladbach): Out injured (thigh) for the defeat to Dortmund.
Nikita Rukavytsya (Hertha Berlin): Started and played 66 minutes in Hertha's disappointing 2-1 home loss to relegated Kaiserslautern. The result leaves Hertha in deep relegation trouble with two games to play.
Robbie Kruse (Fortuna Dusseldorf): Absent (calf) in his side's 2-1 win over Union Berlin which boosts the third-placed side's promotion hopes.

Netherlands
Jason Davidson
(Heracles): Put in a full shift in defence as his midtable side claimed a 3-2 win at De Graafschap despite ending the game with only nine men.
Tommy Oar (FC Utrecht): Was an 87th-minute substitute in the 2-0 victory away to RKC Waalwijk. The win moves Utrecht up to 12th, well clear of relegation and in the hunt for the European playoffs.
Adam Sarota (FC Utrecht): Wasn't in the squad for the win at RKC.
Michael Zullo (FC Utrecht): Was an unused substitute at RKC.

Italy
Carl Valeri
(Sassuolo): Absent from the side which lost 2-0 at home to second-last Gubbio in a blow to their promotion hopes.

Russia
Luke Wilkshire (Dinamo Moscow): Started and played 80 minutes in the 1-0 victory over CSKA Moscow which moves Dinamo into second spot which would mean a place in next season's Uefa Champions League.

Scotland
Ryan McGowan (Hearts): Played a full game in a disappointing 3-0 home defeat to Rangers.
Aaron Mooy (St Mirren): Was an unused substitute in the thrilling 4-4 draw with Dunfermline.

Denmark
Nathan Coe (SonderjyskE): Put in a full shift as his side continued their recent good form with a 2-1 win over bottom club HB Koge.
Brent McGrath (Brondby): Absent (hand) in the 2-0 home loss to FC Midtjylland.

Switzerland

Scott Chipperfield (FC Basel): Absent (groin) for the 3-0 win over Sion.

Austria
James Holland (Austria Vienna): Was an unused substitute as his side lost further ground in the title race after a 1-0 loss at Kapfenberger SV.

Japan
Alex Brosque (Shimizu S-Pulse): Netted his fourth goal of the season, but it was mere consolation as his side went down 3-1 to Gamba Osaka on Sunday. Brosque, who played a full game, volleyed home from close range in stoppage time.
Joshua Kennedy (Nagoya Grampus): Out injured (back) for the 1-1 draw with Sanfrecce Hiroshima.
Jade North (Consadole Sapporo): Played a full 90 minutes in his side's 3-2 home loss to Kawasaki Frontale which leaves them rock bottom of the division with just one point from seven games.
Matt Spiranovic (Urawa Reds): Absent again for the 2-0 Saitama derby loss to Omiya Ardija.
Mark Milligan (JEF United): Absent for his side's 1-0 loss to Matsumoto Yamaga.

Korea
Eddy Bosnar (Suwon Bluewings): Absent for his side's 2-2 draw with Gyeongnam FC.
Nathan Burns (Incheon United): Absent from the squad which lost 1-0 at home to Ulsan Hyundai.
Robbie Cornthwaite (Chunnam Dragons): Suspended for his side's 3-1 victory over Daejeon Citizen.
Luke DeVere (Gyeongnam FC): Out injured (knee) for his side's draw with leaders Suwon Bluewings.
Matt McKay (Busan I'Park): Put in a lively full shift as his side edged past Gangwon 1-0.
Adrian Madaschi (Jeju United): Returned after a thigh problem, playing a full game in a 1-1 draw with FC Seoul. Jeju remain second.
Sasa Ognenovski (Seongnam Ilhwa): Out injured (hamstring) for his side's 4-2 win over Gwangju.
Matt Simon (Chunnam Dragons): Out injured (groin) for his side's victory over Daejeon.

China
Dino Djulbic (Shaanxi Chanba): Put in a full shift in the 2-2 draw with Dalian Aerbin.
Joel Griffiths (Shanghai Shenhua): Left out altogether as Shenhua won 1-0 away to bottom club Dalian Shide.
Rostyn Griffiths (Guangzhou R&P): Was an unused substitute in the 2-1 loss to Shandong Luneng.
Mile Sterjovski (Dalian Aerbin): Started and played 69 minutes in the draw with Dalian Aerbin.
Milan Susak (Tianjin Teda): Played a full game, picking up a booking, in a 2-0 win over Hangzhou.

Uzbekistan
David Carney (Bunyodkor): His side drew 1-1 with Lokomotiv on Sunday.

Follow Ben Somerford on 

Goal_asia now has its own and account, so for all the latest news and features on Asian football follow us by clicking on the above links.
Loading...
Fantasy Football