The Dutch missed out in 2018 but want to make a deep run after finishing second in 2010 and third in 2014. This may be the Dutch’s breakout year.
The history of Dutch soccer is intertwined with the worldwide game, from Total Football to tiki-taka to van Basten to van Dijk. Despite reaching three World Cup finals, most recently in 2010, the Oranje have never won soccer’s top trophy.
In 2016 and 2018, the squad missed the European Championship and World Cup. It’s been a gradual ascent from a FIFA rating of 36 in 2017 during the World Cup qualification. Since 2018, Ronald Koeman and Frank de Boer have managed the Netherlands.
After Euro 2020’s knockout stage failure, Louis van Gaal is back for the third time. His team drew Montenegro and Norway in qualification but won its group. It also topped its Nations League group, beating Belgium, Poland, and Wales to advance.
The Dutch haven’t won a knockout stage match in a major international tournament in eight years. A good team with greater experience may win in Qatar.
Group A Schedule (All Times Eastern)
- Senegal, Nov. 21, 11 A.M.
- Ecuador, Nov. 25, 11 A.M.
- Qatar, Nov. 29, 10 A.M.
Team Coach of Netherlands
- Coach Details: Louis van Gaal, hired in August 2021
Players to Watch – Virgil Van Dijk, Center Back
The Liverpool star has been the cornerstone of the Dutch defense over the past five years. He possesses all of the necessary qualities for a modern center-back.
His height (6’4″), strength, speed, and cool demeanor make him a formidable opponent on the defensive line. The intimidating central defender trio consists of Matthijs de Ligt of Juventus and Stefan de Vrij of Inter Milan and is considered by many to be top-notch in football.
Players To Watch – Frenkie De Jong, Midfielder
Even with the odd drama surrounding his move, de Jong should be considered one of the most significant components of the Oranje. The deft Barcelona midfielder played a crucial role in van Gaal’s qualifying team. Because he would often play in the center of a three-person midfield, his ability to make accurate passes and control the ball in confined areas will be of the utmost importance.
Players To Watch – Memphis Depay, Forward
He lit up qualifying under van Gaal by putting up 12 goals and six assists in only ten games. Still, he is virtually an afterthought at Barcelona, which invites concerns about his preparation for this tournament.
He lighted up qualification under van Gaal by scoring 12 goals and registering six assists. However, he is one of the Netherlands’ most seasoned goal scorers in international competition, as he is among a small group of competitors with previous World Cup experience.
He will be participating in the 2018 World Cup. Should everything fall into place, Depay has the potential to emerge as a dark horse contender for the tournament’s golden boot.
Breakout Candidate – Cody Gakpo, Winger
The PSV star, just 23 years old, has been strongly linked to Manchester United and other high-spending teams throughout Europe, and there is a sound rationale for these rumors.
This season, his goal contributions (he has 15 goals and 14 assists) are on par with any of the greatest in the world, which has helped PSV climb to the top of the league. The competition for his services will only heat up if he can maintain that level of play while competing for his country at the World Cup.
World Cup History of the Netherlands
- 11th Appearance
- Last Appearance: 2014
- Netherlands’ Best Finish: Runner-up in 1974, 1978 and 2010
Outlook and Expectations from the Netherlands
For the Oranje, it’s all about advancing to the post-group stage knockout stages since they’ve never been eliminated before that point in any of their previous 10 World Cup campaigns.
The Dutch breezed through their group in last year’s European Championship, going 3-0 with an 8-2 goal difference. In the round of 16, they played the Czech Republic and were arguably the only team for the first half until a red card to de Ligt sparked a second-half collapse.
They are there to help van Gaal’s team dominate play. Although Senegal and Ecuador are not easy opponents, this is the best group available to a side selected from Pot 2 in April’s tournament. Only one of their three Group A opponents, the Netherlands, has more World Cup victories than them (27 to 7).
If the Dutch perform what is expected of them and win their group, they will play the runner-up from Group B, which includes England, the United States, Wales, and Iran. The biggest uncertainty will be whether or not the team’s offensive threat can hold its own against the greatest in the world.
With five goals in 2010, Wesley Sneijder was the top scorer among midfielders. Former Dutch national team players Arjen Robben and Robin van Persie headed a star-studded offense in 2014.
In this year’s qualifying run, Depay put up impressive figures. Nonetheless, four of his goals were scored through the penalty kick., and no other striker finished with more than three goals. Depay and the Netherlands offense may not have the firepower to get to the last round of a big international event.
Although the Dutch are not among the tournament’s favorites in Qatar, they cannot afford another early exit in the knockout round.
World Cup Squad of Netherlands
- Justin Bijlow (Feyenoord) – Goalkeepers,
- Andries Noppert (Heerenveen) – Goalkeepers,
- Remko Pasveer (Ajax) – Goalkeepers.
- Nathan Aké (Manchester City) – Defenders,
- Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool) – Defenders,
- Denzel Dumfries (Inter Milan) – Defenders,
- Jeremie Frimpong (Bayer Leverkusen) – Defenders,
- Matthijs de Ligt (Bayern Munich) – Defenders,
- Tyrell Malacia (Manchester United) – Defenders,
- Jurriën Timber (Ajax) – Defenders,
- Stefan de Vrij (Inter Milan) – Defenders,
- Daley Blind (Ajax) – Defenders
- Steven Berghuis (Ajax) – Midfielders,
- Frenkie de Jong (Barcelona) – Midfielders,
- Davy Klaassen (Ajax) – Midfielders,
- Teun Koopmeiners (Atalanta) – Midfielders,
- Marten de Roon (Atalanta) – Midfielders,
- Xavi Simons (PSV Eindhoven) – Midfielders,
- Kenneth Taylor (Ajax) – Midfielders
- Steven Bergwijn (Ajax) – Forwards,
- Memphis Depay (Barcelona) – Forwards,
- Cody Gakpo (PSV) – Forwards,
- Vincent Janssen (Antwerp) – Forwards,
- Luuk de Jong (PSV) – Forwards,
- Noa Lang (Club Brugge) – Forwards,
- Wout Weghorst (Beşiktaş) – Forwards