World Cup vice-champions, on the second place after Spain in the FIFA rankings are one of the main favourites to win the European Championship. Two years ago in the World Cup final after extra time the Netherlands lost 0:1 to the Spanish. The team of Bert van Marwijk will play for the ninth time at the European Championship. The best result so far was the gold medal in 1988.
In qualifying for the Euro 2012 the Oranje team won 27 of 30 possible points available. The brightest points of the team were, of course, Dirk Kuyt, Ruud Van Nisterloy and Klaas Jan Huntelaar, who scored in the qualifying rounds as many as twelve goals. In the finals the important thing for the final result will be good shape of Wesley Sneijder, Rafael Van der Varta and of course Robin Van Persie, who at Arsenal shoots instantly already having scored more than twenty goals. At the Euro Championship the Dutch will play their games in Ukraine and will have as their rivals, in the group of death games, the Germans, the Portuguese and the Danes.
On the one hand it’s hard to have stronger group for the vice-champions of Europe, on the other hand, such a strong team should have no problems with being promoted to the next round. The Orange this year may prove to be better than the Spanish. They are experienced, burn with revenge and matured as a team to reach for the title.
Netherlands Euro 2012 Squad
Goalkeepers: Tim Krul, Maarten Stekelenburg, Michel Vorm
Defenders: Khalid Boulahrouz, Wilfred Bouma, John Heitinga, Joris Mathijsen, Gregory van der Wiel, Ron Vlaar, Jetro Willems
Midfielders: Ibrahim Afellay, Mark van Bommel, Nigel de Jong, Stijn Schaars, Wesley Sneijder, Kevin Strootman, Rafael van der Vaart
Forwards: Klaas Jan Huntelaar, Luuk de Jong, Dirk Kuyt, Luciano Narsingh, Arjen Robben, Robin van Persie
Netherlands Group Matches
Saturday, June 9, 2012 Netherlands v Denmark (18:00 CET in Kharkiv)
Wednesday, June 13, 2012 Netherlands v Germany (20:45 CET in Kharkiv)
Sunday, June 17, 2012 Portugal v Netherlands (20:45 CET in Kharkiv)
Netherlands Quick Facts
- Best World Cup Result: Runners-up (1974, 1978, 2010)
- Best European Championship Result: Winners (1988)
- Record Scorer: Patrick Kluivert (40 goals between 1994 and 2004)
- Most Capped Player: Edwin van der Sar (130 caps from 1995 to 2009)
- Coach: Bert van Marwijk
- Captain: Marc van Bommel