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"The intellectualisation
of football has
always foundered
on a simple problem-
-the players. Doing
all your most
rewarding thinking
with your feet seems
to dull the philo-
sophical impulse.
Unless, of course,
you are Dutch.
According to legend,
Europeans played
a moronic, muscular
version of the world's
game, until Holland
proclaimed its vision
of total football in the
1974 World Cup,
and enlightenment

Brilliant Orange: The Neurotic Genius of Dutch Football

Robben is back!

Thursday, 24 June 2010

Klaas-Jan Huntelaar is happy about his goal against Cameroon

The national football team of the Netherlands can go and warm-up for an encounter with Slovakia in the round of 16 of the 2010 World Cup in South Africa.

By beating Cameroon 1-2 in the last group game Holland secured the first spot in group E.

The winning goal was scored in the 84th minute by Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, after a great run and shot - that hit the post - by Arjen Robben. It was Huntelaar's debut at a World Cup.

Win the group, gain confidence en don't sustain any damage - that was the mission for Holland in the game against Cameroon. The games against Denmark (2-0) and Japan (1-0) Holland were certain of a spot in the round of 16. The game against Cameroon just had to become a nice finish.

The entire mission was accomplished. Holland didn't just win, but played decent football in some stretches of the game. Besides no player sustained a suspension or an injury. On top of that the return of Arjen Robben put new faith in the hearts of the Dutch. And that wasn't just because his great run and fantastic shot led to the winning goal. After a tough recovery track the Bayern Munich player seems ready for the knockout stages of the tournament

The moment Robben came on, 20 minutes from the end, the score was 1-1. Robin van Persie opened the score in the 36th minute. After a decent linkup with Rafael van der Vaart the center forward lashed the ball through the legs of the Cameroon keeper Hamidou Souleymanou into the back of the net. A welcome goal for Van Persie, who hasn't been his normal self so far in the tournament.

The Dutch lead was justified at that moment, as the team played well. Cameroon played much more offensively than Denmark and Japan had done, and thus the Dutch forwards had a lot more room to move. Sadly it was only Van Persie who benefited.

But after the opening goal lost the dominant position. The drive seemed to ebb away, and Cameroon - already eliminated - dropped all shyness and started looking for a goal.

After Jean Makoun had missed a decent chance Samuel Eto'o scored the equalizer from the spot. The penalty kick was awarded after a clumsy handball by Rafael van der Vaart.

With Robben on for Van der Vaart Holland took the initiative again. Before Van Marwijk had also brought on Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and Eljero Elia for Van Persie and Dirk Kuyt, and with three fresh forwards Holland went looking for the winning goal. It was the first time this tournament that Holland played two real wingers (Elia and Robben).

From his trusted right side Robben proved immediately why every defensive dreads his presence. Sent towards the Cameroon goal by a great Sneijder pass he saw the direct path to the goal cut off by Song Sr., then cut inside and unleashed a vicious shot that hit the inside of the far post, and then bounced back into the feat of Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, who made no mistake from a difficult angle.

Holland thus finished the group stages with a perfect score. In the round of 16 Holland will face Slovakia, and they have a real good chance of progressing.


0-1 36' R. van Persie
65' S. Eto'o 1-1
1-2 83' K. Huntelaar


  17' D. Kuyt
26' N. N Koulou  
  65' R. Van der Vaart
  70' G. van Bronckhorst
81' S. M\'bia  


S. Hamidou   M. Stekelenburg  
B. Assou-Ekotto   J. Heitinga  
Geremi   J. Mathijsen  
A. Chedjou   K. Boulahrouz  
G. Bong 56' V. Aboubakar G. van Bronckhorst  
J. Makoun   M. van Bommel  
L. N\'Guémo   N. de Jong  
N. N Koulou 74' R. Song R. Van der Vaart 73' A. Robben
S. M\'bia   W. Sneijder  
E. Choupo-Moting 72' M. Idrissou D. Kuyt 67' E. Elia
S. Eto'o   R. van Persie 59' K. Huntelaar



Robben: "Hard to grasp"
Van Bommel after defeat: "I'm a little speechless"
Van Marwijk: "In no mood to get negative"
Flat Dutch don't know what to do with 20+ chances
Netherlands-Denmark: lineup
Joris Mathijsen recovering well
Cruyff: "Kuyt at right back"
Mathijsen still uncertain - could miss entire tournament
Holland and Denkmark: head-to-head
Van Persie seems worth the confidence
Van Marwijk again opts for Van Persie instead of Huntelaar
Huntelaar: "Upset is not the right the word"
Ron Vlaar: "I know what I am capable of"
Van Marwijk: "We remained disciplined"
Ibi and Rafa show manager he has options
Ibrahim Afellay Oranje's Zidane?
Van Marwijk looking for certainties
Cruijff: "Not enough depth in your game is asking for trouble"
Bouma: "I've gone through the desert"
Van Persie: "Defeat at this point not a problem"
Euro 2012 finals squad
Mathijsen strains muscle
Bulgarians surprise Oranje
Ola Toivonen's goal sees Sweden beat Holland and qualify
Klaas-Jan Huntelaar sinks Moldova
Oranje maintain perfection, beat Finland
Netherlands thrash San Marino in Euro 2012 qualifier
Kuyt kills off brave Hungary for Netherlands
Oranje trash Hungary
Sweden no match for Oranje
Van Marwijk: "We left them without chance"
Dirk Kuyt out for months
"We are prepared for all scenarios"
Minimal but easy win for Holland in Moldavia
Van Marwijk: "We played very well"
Holland want result after tumultuous week
Van der Vaart to replace De Jong
"This case only has losers"
Van Marwijk drops Nigel de Jong
Holland & Moldavia: head-to-head
Holland & Sweden: head-to-head
Wisgerhof replaces Maduro
Bouma back on the radar
Netherlands - Finland 2-1
Van Marwijk: "We were late all over the pitch"
Van Bommel: "There wasn't anymore in it"
Heitinga: "That can not happen"
Van der Vaart unhappy with role on the side
Kuyt and Boulahrouz out with injury
"It all revolves around Jari Litmanen"
Sneijder: "Don't tinker with it"
Alonso: "No hard feelings"
Van Marwijk: "Second half was better"
San Marino-Netherlands 0-5
Oranje: a new mission