Top of the Match:
Flop of the Match:
Before the start of Euro 2012,Netherlands were considered as one of the favourites to win the trophy. But the last world cup runners-up made a shock exit from the tournament last night without earning even a single point. The top scorers in England and Germany, last season-Van Persie and Huntelaar-had a tough task in finding the nets.
To register a place in quarter-finals, Dutch players entered the pitch to win by the margin of two goals difference and with the expectation of Germans to defeat Danes.
Dutch started the game pretty well, but failed to keep the momentum till the end. In the 11th minute of the game, Robben provided space to Van der Vaart to shoot towards the post and the Spurs’s midfielder broke the dead-lock with the well executed long range shot. But, anyway, the single goal was not sufficient to send them through. So, they came up with more attacking football. The domination of possession by Dutch allowed Portuguese to provide more counter-attacks.
In the 22nd minute, Ronaldo made a fine run towards the goal but his chip from the edge of the box struck the post. Three minutes later, Willems’s back pass was obstructed by Postiga and Zaragoza’s striker shot was brilliantly saved by Dutch keeper, Stekelenburg. Once again, Willems mistimed the shot in 28th minute. This time the ball was fed to Joao Pareira andValencia’s full-back provided a blistering pass to Ronaldo. Pareira was running from right to left near the box and no one expected that he would be putting the ball in between the space of De Jong and Mathijsen. Ronaldo ran in between De Jong and Vlaar to make use of the brilliant ball. Roanldo collected the ball well and his positive-minded short rescind out a goal advantage of the Dutch.
The millions of hearts of Dutch fans were broken at this time. After Ronaldo’s goal, both teams didn’t get any real chances to score.
In the other game at Lviv, at half-time, the score-line was pretty same as of Netherlandsvs Portugalmatch (1-1). If Denmarkwould score and Portugalfail to score in the second half, then Denmarkwould be going to the quarter-finals. Thinking of this, Portugalcontinued to play the attacking game through counter-attacks whereas on the other hand, Netherlandshave to find nets twice atleast to have an outside chance. So, counter-attacks were going on both sides as majority of those came from Portugal. In the second minute of the restart, Ronaldo missed a glorious opportunity to go ahead as Dutch defenders didn’t afford him much space to shoot towards the goal. In the 55th minute, Meireles was brought down during a Dutch counter-attack but referee said the game to carry on. During this time, Van Persie lost the ball to Moutinho and the Portuguese attack came ON. Moutinho fed Ronaldo and after a fine run till the edge of the box, he passed it to Coentrao. But Coentrao’s shot was brilliantly saved by Stekelenburg. In the 71st minute, brilliant ball from Ronaldo made Nani to shoot towards the goal. But, once again Stekelenburg made a great save.
In the 74th minute, Dutch hopes of reaching the last eight was thrashed as Ronaldo found the nets with a cool finish from Nani’s ball. Thinking Ronaldo would be shooting with his left legs, Van der Wiel dived to block him. But, Ronaldo chipped the ball with hi left leg to right and he finished it off coolly with a shot from his right leg. Thinking off this goal, after the match, Van der Wiel stated in a press conference that it was impossible for any defenders in the world to mark Ronaldo. In the 82nd minute, another long range effort from Van der Vaart hit the post. No real chances came to score for both the teams after the 82nd minute and the match was poised to end in 2-1 victory in favour ofPortugal. The first unexpected shock of the tournament happened as Dutch was eliminated without even a single point.
Dutch-In World Cup 2010 and Euro 2012:
In the World Cup, Dirk Kuyt had been starting in right wing position, Robben in left and Sneijder in centre at the back of Robin Van Persie. But in Euros, as Kuyt didn’t get much playing time inLiverpoollast season, Van Marwijk gave chance to Afellay to start in first two games and ahead of kuyt which costed the Dutch side, more.
Rui Patricio (GK)
Joao Pareira (DF)
Bruno Alves (DF)
Fabio Coentrao (DF)
Raul Meireles (MF) <Custodio 68’>
Joao Moutinho (MF)
Miguel Veloso (MF)
Nani (FW) <Rolando 88’>
Cristiano Ronaldo (FW)
Helder Postiga (FW) <Nelson Olivera 62’>
Maarten Stekelenburg (GK)
Gregory Van der Wiel (DF)
Joris Mathijsen (DF)
Ron Vlaar (DF)
Jorry Willems (DF) <Ibrahim Afellay 66’>
Nigel De Jong (MF)
Rafael Van der Vaart (MF)
Arjen Robben (MF)
Wesley Sneijder (MF)
Robin Van Persie (FW)
Klass-Jan Huntelaar (FW)
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