An embarrassment of riches on the forward line have left coach Bert van Marwijk with a selection dilemma and the demands of a nation to abandon the functional, aggressive style of the World Cup Final in 2010. Accommodating Robin Van Persie and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar up front may prove impossible but arguably it’s the defence the manager should be concerned with.
- Have won eight of their last nine in the group stages of major competitions
- Extra time or penalties were their downfall in the last two World Cups and the last European Championships
- The Netherlands outscored Germany in qualifying, notching 37 times
Man City: Bags of talent and a coach being asked to leave his defensive instincts behind as they go in search of long-awaited success. Team spirit could be the issue if players don’t get enough time on the pitch, but if they can find harmony the potential is unlimited.
Any Other Business
Giovanni van Bronckhorst retired after the 2010 World Cup and left a gaping hole in the Netherlands defence and while Erik Pieters might have filled it, injury has ruled him out of the tournament. Question marks also raised over the likes of Nigel de Jong and Ibrahim Afellay, who have lacked game time for their clubs, so could the Dutch be vulnerable to a surprise exit at the Group of Death stage?
Robin Van Persie to score Over 2.5 goals at 5/6 with Paddy Power.