Oranje taking on the US

My friends, I am moving house this weekend so no long stories. Just some fun tidbits. First some fun news on Pulisic, who is declared fit to play vs The Netherlands.

US coach Gregg Berhalter and players Sergino Dest and Luca de la Torre have well publicised histories in the Netherlands. Dest was born in the Netherlands and almost played for the Oranje, but the Milan star decided to go for the land of his parents. De La Torre played very recently for Heracles Almelo and coach Berhalter spent 6 seasons in Holland as a player. He played for Cambuur and Sparta and with the latter, he beat Louis van Gaal’s Ajax, 1-0 in 1997.

Not a lot of people know that Christian Pulisic played for PSV in 2013. For 2 weeks only. But as you can see below in the same team as Cody Gakpo, his opponent tonight. Pulisic was on trial and impressed PSV mightily. But when Borussia Dortmund offered Pulisic Sr. a job as youth coach on top, the youngster went for the German club.

Van Gaal didn’t give much away in the press conference. It’s everyone’s guess what he’ll do with the line up but I think he’ll use the usual players (no Xavi, no Lang) as he is hoping/working on getting his preferred eleven (13?) to start clicking into gear. He did joke that he heard the Belgium job was available after the World Cup and that his wife, the by know infamous Truus, wouldn’t mind living in Belgium for a spell.

Berhalter too had some fun moments in his presser. He said Van Gaal claimed not to remember losing against Sparta with Berhalter in 1997, but the USA coach thinks Louis was lying. “A guy like him remembers those sorts of things, trust me.” Berhalter has generated heaps of inspiration from his time in Holland. “It was great. What struck me was the after training and matches, players would debate tactics with the coach and everyone in Holland has an opinion. I learned a lot. We had a good striker in Remco Boere, he instructed me exactly how he wanted to crosses. I hit the ball with a lot of effect. He hated that. So I had to adjust.” Berhalter became good friends with current Feyenoord coach Arne Slot. “He was young still, 16 years old when I met him, but it was clear he could become a top coach. He is intelligent, calm and has a great view on football. Passion and intelligence.” He also laughed when asked about the criticism of the fans on Oranje. “That is normal in Holland. They are so critical and vocal. We once were 1-0 down against Ajax away, and the Ajax fans booed their team! You have 16 million national team coaches, right?”

Aaron Johansson and Steven Berghuis at AZ

Former USA international Aaron Johansson remembers his time in Holland as well, the part Icelandic, part American forward played with Steven Berghuis and Davy Klaassen. Injuries made an end to Johansson’s career. “I am not surprised to see Berghuis in Oranje. In fact, I expected him way earlier. He did have a tough time in England I guess, but has the most gifted left foot I ever came across. I am not surprised he is World Cup material. I played with Klaassen at Werder Bremen. Again, not surprised he is in the team. He is so good, his movements and the easy with which he plays. Always simple but always the right pass. Sometimes you don’t realise how good he is. He can make tough things look easy. It’s logical that he is in the line up.”

Johansson ended his statements saying he hopes USA wins 3-2, with a goal by Berghuis and Klaassen.

Why does Virgil van Dijk play as a goalie for Cameroon??

The betting analysts now moved Oranje up to fifth spot to win the World Cup, behind Brazil, Argentina, France, Spain, England and Portugal.

At the last Presser, Van Gaal responded to the criticism his team is receiving.  “Its not new.  I am used to it. I got it in 2014 as well. The players are used to it too. We just do our thing.” On the comments Memphis made, that he prefers to play with Bergwijn next to him and Gakpo behind him. “It’s his right to give his opinion. I don’t mind. It is something we do in The Netherlands. Particularly, in the Netherlands. Is it smart? No, I don’t think so but I can’t blame him for speaking his mind.”

And: “We are now all match fit, for the first time this tournament. We had players like Klaassen, De Roon, Berghuis, De Vrij and of course Memphis not totally 100% but we were able to bring them all to this point.”

I say: 3-1 for Holland. Memphis, Bergwijn and Gakpo scoring.

Interview Frenkie: with English subtitle option

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  1. Van Gaal will not change the line up. De Roon to protect the offensive role of Frenkie and Klaassen on 10, to be used for his runs and work ethics.

    Memphis and Gakpo up front.

    The US usually plays an hour at full throttle but in the last 30 minutes they’ll get a second -half drip, so you can expect a more creative player like Berghuis in the last stage of the game as more space will become available.

  2. Good luck with the move Jan! It can be fun or a pain the @.ss depending on the reason but watch your back, don’t lift heavy stuff 🙂
    I keep hearing this stereotyping statement about the dutch having 11 million critics and coaches in the country. I believe it is exaggerated. Every passionate fan in the western world will have his opinions and will express them about their team, nothing special about the dutch. As per Berhalter’s comment, of course public in the US doesn’t have many opinions about soccer since they have no idea about the sport. But they can give you lessons in between a dozen beers and hamburgers at an american football game, NBA or baseball etc.
    Last night I caught a news anchor at Fox Sports who stated that he doesn’t know much soccer but he was shocked to hear that countries like Mexico and Germany are out of the WC. He had a very worrying face and posed the questions: “what is going on?”. Too many !diots on TV who try to take on things they have no idea about.

  3. Regarding the game I have no idea what will happen but it may come down to luck if we keep playing the same style (which we most likely will). Here’s hoping we live to fight another day.
    However, I am prepared to hear the usual excuses if we lose like: we’re a small country and it is hard to compete against a 350 million people giant, football is not easy anymore, their tactics made it hard for us (because only NT has the license the play 3-5-2 or whatever), there was a virus going on in the group, my wife gave me a bad look last night which unsettled me or some other BS like this.

  4. President of the US was on a TV add supporting the US team saying : “It is called soccer. You guys are going to do it.” It’s an amazing circus. Entertainment for everyone. Can’t blame McKennie putting that threatening face on. For some reason he has a French flag painted on his head.

  5. Neither team has any excuse for losing today! This is the best side the US has fielded in recent memory, and yet the Dutch team is still more talented, more experienced and more tactically advanced. And neither team has trailed at any point in this tournament, which means the first goal is likely to be decisive.

    I certainly can’t predict the outcome, but I’m really hoping for a good, exciting game that is won rather than lost and that does credit to the sport!

  6. I hope we can beat some scary stats which are a matter of time to be broken:
    – Haven’t lost in 18 games
    – haven’t trailed in many games
    – haven’t been scored against in 1st half in a long time
    – haven’t been behind by more than 1 goal in a very long time
    On the other hand we haven’t won by more than 2 goals in a while so I hope this is the real stat we break today!!!

  7. We look surprisingly content to allow the US to remain in possession. I wonder if that’s by design.

    Blind inadvertently playing Pulisic onside on that opportunity…

  8. Unless the strategy is to give the US the ball and let them tire themselves out, I’m not sure what the plan is in these first 10 minutes. They US is totally on the front foot and taking it to us. Dumfries looking like a liability right now and absolutely zero possession by Dutch midfield.

  9. We are looking very dangerous in transition, but need to finish! Forcing the US to build in possession is to our advantage, but the game is still pretty nervy right now…

    Hopefully we do not become complacent and let the US grow into the match

    1. Dumfries has been manhandling Pulisic so far with support from Timber. I’m more concerned at the moment about Dest vs Blind. And what are de Roon and Klaassen doing? Very little impact so far and just being drawn out all over the field…

  10. The longer the US center backs are on the ball, the better it is for the Dutch. Slow decision-making, unimaginative, bogging the game down. We’ve also been much better at getting Memphis the ball but can’t get him any support.

  11. We’re playing WAY too comfortable with the lead 40 minutes in! All of these minutes are just a waste of time if we aren’t actually interested in trying to score again.

  12. I haven’t screamed like this in like forever. My voice is gone. 45 more mins of torture.
    We are not taking good care of the ball. Too many misplaced passes and intercepting in defense. Counter attacking can really settle it once and for all for us.

  13. My thinking is the US will go for broke in 2nd half. I hope we take good care of the ball and kill them in counter attacks. It seems to me Frenkie is a bit slow, I hope no flu.

  14. Our strikers are baiting the usa Center backs to dribble into the middle. Depay and gakpo are staying wide on the fullbacks and then collapse when the time is right. Same thing Jan talked about against belguim.

    Dumfries looking much better with space to run into.

    Blind has initiated our press a few times. De roon isn’t involved offensively but seems ok plugging gaps.

    Klassen hasn’t been great with the ball but it was his run on the depay goal that pulled the defender to him. I’m noticing more of his off the ball contributions.

  15. Klaassen has not been great on the ball that is for sure, but he has been doing decent defensive work, dropping off and blocking the pass to Adams, the fellow who has pushed the pushed the US forward in this WC.

    Dumfries is having a really good game, playing physical and handling Pulisic, plus two superb crosses.

    Don’t know why the US is trying to force it down their left side (against Dumfries). Their offensive edge is Dest against Blind. (Now that he has scored, :), it would be okay with me if they brought Malacia in.)

  16. It so amusing that some many teams rely on center backs to score on corners. They play defense for a reason!

    Memphis playing with increasing confidence and Dumfries is on fire!

    1. Agreed! Almost all first touch passing with a run from Gakpo mixed in. It was very nice to see us in full flight.

      Speaking of flight, Greg Berhalter is wearing Air Jordans for some reason…

  17. The US team is really in disarray at this point. I can’t recall Dumfries and Blind having better matches at the same time. Both have been able to stay very high up the field for most of the second half.

    Memphis almost scored again on a diving header but a great save from Matt Turner!

  18. Well done by Oranje today! Transition game was on fire. With better finishing, this would have been even more lopsided! Looking forward to a Netherlands vs Australia quarterfinal 🙂

    1. Sorry for the spoilers, Jan! I think you’ll enjoy it though, so make sure to watch the whole thing

      LVG made all the right decisions by standing pat with his formation and player selection. I was comprehensively wrong in all my suggestions, but am certain happy to have been so wrong!

  19. My little 9yr old is still puzzled why I cheer for the Orange instead of the US. I have tried to explain so many times that I have been in love with Orange since 1980 and can’t change after more than 40 years.

  20. Great win. I thought LVG has been successfully polishing his 532 system and switch to 442 was a little premature. Congrats, guys. Let’s celebrate it.

  21. The US team is still very young and has a bright future. But they were overmatched today and didn’t make any effective adjustments. Our man-marking in the midfield stymied their attack and they were left with primarily their center backs in possession, passing back and forth. Our 5-3-2 was the perfect solution in this match and Blind and Dumfries were AMAZING, along with Ake and Timber. And Noppert!

  22. Game stats are all in favor of the US including possession . So we have gone opposite of everything we used to do well in the past and are winning. Please continue winning. I want more of this goddamit.

    1. It is funny that we ceded possession to the US for most of the match, but as we discussed beforehand. that is where they are weakest. So we made them play to their weakness and then punished them for it.

      We had 11 shots to their 17, but 6 of ours were on target vs 8 of their (including a few long hopeful shots)

      They outpassed us 472 – 316 and were more accurate as well — 83% to 76%, but LVG’s plan worked well and once we got the lead, we were content to play on the counter.

      Amazingly, we apparently had only 2 accurate crosses, but what crosses they were!

  23. Those who were criticizing Dumfries. Well you see now how vs Senegal and ecoudar, he was marked out and what happens when you leave him free giving space.

    Nice win, QF

    1. @wilson frimpong may have been better against teams playing 3at the back but dumfries is so effective with space! Wingbacks connecting on 2 goals is brilliant!

  24. As an American I was hoping for a good game and the early goal sort of killed the match. US had possession but the Dutch always seemed in control. The finishing was clinical. It is safe to say Memphis is nearing full fitness.

    The American defending was really poor. They could not cope with the Dutch movement off the ball. Dutch midfield was MUCH better against a very good US midfield.

    Keep in mind this US team tied England after dominating them for 45 minutes. Good result for the Dutch and great that Memphis is back.

  25. Haven’t been screaming like this for8 years ?

    So happy with the in and most important it boost their confidence and Xavi also played !!

    Let the boys get some good rest now and bring on Argentina! We are not afraid of them

    Yes we are not the same team as 2014 but so are

  26. Wow finally sipping some good whisky in peace 🙂 Happy with the performance, very strong defending by all the team and always dangerous in the buildup. We just need to avoid some silly passes in the midfield area. Two such passes ended in opposition goal or almost.

  27. I would go out on a limb and say that the critical point in the game was 2nd minute when Pulisic one on one against Noppert didn’t score. That goal would have changed the whole game and thrown our tactics out the window. Thankful for Noppert!

  28. A little early, but I’ll join you for that whisky in about 8 hours, Alistair. I’m buying. Great win. (Of course, all wins at the WC are great wins in my book.) A

    Quick thoughts.

    The team soaked up the US pressure early, and except for that funny play that Pulisic got through on early, they didn’t seem too troubled. Backline was really good. (Ake, superb, really all three.) Wingbacks were awfully good tonite, both offensively and defensively. Blind had a some trouble with Dest in the first half, less so in the second.

    Dumfries was MoM. Defensively strong, intense, physical, and offensively, a goal and two wonderfully picked out crosses. No hard feet for him today.

    Noppert and Ake close behind for MoM.

    Memphis did his thing; looked tired at the end. The bad back pass, and then a mistake on clearing the corner leading to the US’s (odd) goal both looked a product of fatigue.

    The halftime changes were interesting. Leading 2-0, and LVG went offense for defense. He knew the US coming forward even more, and so he was looking for that goal to ice it, game opened up, and the NT was so close to killing the game off with the 3rd goal. Koopmeiners played well. He may go back in for De Roon against Argentina.

    De Jong played a tucked in and gritty game. More battling, covering for others, closing gaps and closing down (not unlike a typical Van Bommel game), and he did it well. Is there any role he can’t play in the mf? So lucky to have him.

    Simons. Must have been a little nervous as his first three passes were off. But, man, you see flashes that he just may be the future.

  29. @Andrew, I would never bring Koop for de Roon if we play Argentina. I know Koop very well and I know what well-playing looks like for Teun. Unfortunately, he struggles in Oranje in general and today was not his best game either. I saw many sloppy passes and undecisiveness, and sometimes he was clueless defensively. Closer to the end he did a couple of good intercepts. Otherwise, still long way to go for Teun. You know, he is my the most favorite player in the history of AZ Alkmaar, and I am very picky when it comes to his performance.

    1. @az-forever

      Honestly, I was expecting a little bit more from Teun also, but sadly he hasn’t perform and go with the expectations so far .

      I’ll go with either Taylor and Simons instead (thought that this might not their best positions).

  30. @AZ-forever: I will defer to you on that one, AZ. I know how closely you follow your team, and that you are a fan of Koopmeiners. So point taken. Just think think that De Roon looks a little too deliberate in his offensive game, and that Koopmeiners’ play improved from the Ecuador match.

  31. My problem now is that I want to keep my TV room in the same shape and mess that was during the game, for good luck. It’ll be a few hard fighting days with my wife 🙂

  32. @Andrew, I do not argue against improvement, but it is not how he plays in Bergamo. In Oranje, I saw many instances when he felt lost. In general, those two are very different type of players. Teun is not a destroyer as de Roon is, and he needs to use his beautiful long passes to advance attackers and attacking midfielders. I have not seen that yet. Defensively, he makes a lot of mistakes and that is the reason why he got two yellow cards in four games. Again, it is absolutely OK to disagree.

  33. Well done to the team for making it to the quarterfinals. A few things that need to be addressed are that even though this team plays with 5 in the back we haven’t been convincing defensively. Blind struggled against Dest and luckily the Pulisic effort was saved from Noppert. Blind at fault for that one keeping Pulisic onside.

    We cannot make mistakes like that against teams like Argentina or Beazil. A player that I thought did everything wrong in today’s game was Koopmeiners. He really was all over the place! That is a problem due to the fact that we lack good midfielders apart from De Jong in the team.

    Don’t want to be a party pooper but judging from what I’ve seen this team cannot beat the top teams in this competition unless Van Gaal works his magic and we get extremely lucky which is hard to get 3 games in a row moving forward.

    1. @AZ, one of the great things about this board is that if I offer something, I can hear different thoughts from people who have much more knowledge than I do on a subject, or look at a game and see something I did not—such as yourseself on Koopmeiners. So, your comments (and Tomy14’s) open up my perspective, and are much appreciated.

  34. Duels im the midfield and the second balls mostly went in favour of dutch.I have been saying that its better to peak in the knockout stages than in Group stages. It is coming true, it seems.

  35. @Andrew, My pleasure, bud. Many people in this blog can learn from your being so open-minded and receptive to different opinions. Always a pleasure to have an opinion exchange with you.

  36. Tomy14, I also expect more from our midfield. Even Frenkie was hesitant and not quick in several moments. Except for Ake I don’t think there is another player that is in peak form so far considering all the games.

  37. Argentina is letting Australia get more ball, because they know Australia can not make very offesive attack.
    Argentina play difference with againts Mexico or Poland. This time they more passive. I think it’s their game play.

  38. WOW! That was a bad mistake by Australia. Probably too much to recover from now…

    Dybala appears to be warming up. I didn’t know he was allowed to play when Messi was in the team 😀

  39. Strange kinda game..wudnt think vGaal wud be so into counter attacking, but i sort of worked. I was suprised how difficult it was for us to get from defense to midfield with the high prressure of the US team. Not a lot of ball control on midfield. Very happy with the result of course..Holland – Argentina will be a very nice thing to look forward to

  40. So now it’s time for Argentina. One of my earliest memories of pure orange happiness is the legendary goal scored vs Argentina by Dennis Bergkamp at 1998 World Cup. I hope I’ll make some new memories for life come Friday. I really liked the Dutch today. And it’s great to see Dumfries back in form. Depay was also great. I think If we beat Argentina we can go all the way.

  41. Congratulations to our team!
    @ jan- Considering how the team has been playing, what happen when and if we are down by a goal? What happen if Argentina scores first? I was watching the game on a French network earlier and that same question was asked.

  42. I have to admit Noppert has really changed the complexion of the tea I mean pre world cup, this was an area which looked to be thin. His presence behind already a high profile backline gives the team more assurance and perhaps more stability going in the PKs if any. This is something that was unseen/ forthcoming and perhaps noppert showcased his abilities while in the camp after initially being selected.

  43. It’s interesting that in the knock out round the Netherlands and Croatia are grouped with all of the North and South American (USA, Argentina and Brazil), and Pacific Rim and Oceanic (Japan, Korea and Australia) teams. So we truly will need to beat “the Rest of the World” to get back to the final and likely face a European team there. And this after already facing an African team, a South American team and a Middle Eastern team in the opening round. I guess if we are to truly win a “World Cup”, this is what it should be like…

    The other side of the bracket is all European (England, France, Poland, Spain, Portugal and Switzerland) plus two African teams (Senegal and Morocco)

    1. That said, I think FIFA is really going to want an Argentina – Brazil semi-final and a France – Portugal semi-final, which could lead to possibly Brazil vs France or Messi vs Ronaldo in the final!

      Hopefully we can crash the party and screw up those plans as much as possible!

    1. Agree completely! I don’t know whether its Man City, or his role in this team, or just his further maturity and coming into his own, but he’s been really excellent so far! And our back three together allows us lots of flexibility if we want to try different things

  44. What a day for Oranje. Unbelievable.

    Sitting in a bar with hundreds of US fans but our small group was right in front and made more noise than all of them combined. My voice is gone, but I don’t really need it until Friday.

    Virgil also deserves some praise here— he was way more himself in this game and let nothing past. The American goal was a fluke as was the ball that fell kindly for Pulisic in the early minutes. But thank God Noppert stopped that one— you guys are right that it would have changed everything

  45. My son just called to “go off” on Greg Berhalter:

    First, apparently Berhalter claimed that the US lost because they just doesn’t have a Memphis Depay — an experienced forward who’s played at Barcelona and in the Champions League . My son responded that if the US had lost to Denmark, would he be complaining that the US doesn’t have a Martin Braithewaite?

    Next, apparently van Gaal said afterwards that the US didn’t adapt or adjust during the match and that the Dutch had made their plan targeting the flanks. My son pointed out that this was obvious within 10 minutes to anyone watching the match, including to him, who has zero years of coaching experience and who was already suggesting the US shift to a three-back and clog up the wings…

    My son seems to be right about as often as I am wrong, which is pretty much constantly, and also slightly annoying 😉

  46. I really liked what I heard from LVG after the game:
    “I was very critical at half time in my analysis with my players. Despite being in the led we suffered so much, we were dispossessed so often, it was not necessary and that’s not acceptable in a World Cup, if you play top countries you cannot make it. We will evaluate the match, roll up our sleeves and get to work again, I can’t promise anymore than that.”
    My thoughts: Argentina is beatable but we need to take care of the ball especially in tight spaces. We can’t make so many mistakes in midfield and need to be more clinical upfront. And for the love of God I can’t understand why Weghorst is such a fixture of a replacement every game. What does he bring? Or it could just some sort of good omen for LVG, otherwise I can’t explain it.

    1. I agree Balkan, but my confidence in LVG is returning a little bit. And after 8 long years, he probably has a new plan for dealing with Messi and Argentina. I really don’t think that we want to let Argentina have the ball as much as we let the US have it today, because of course they are much better with it and that’s how they like to play. So if we intend to beat them (at least prior to penalties), we’re going to have to be much, much better on the ball ourselves.

      The good thing though is that our team really seems to be gaining confidence and momentum and will view this Argentina match as a real challenge. This will be the best side we’ve faced yet and we’ll really need to be locked in against them. And even if we are successful, Brazil is likely waiting behind them. No more easy contests from here on out!

  47. @Balkan, appreciate the Van Gaal quote, I had not heard that. Interesting. With regard to Weghorst today, a few thoughts: it was the last few minutes of the game, so he’s a big body who can hold ball up, especially if they could get it down corner; he’s another tall player to deal with corners and free kicks sent into the box; and on goal kicks, with the US pressing up against the short pass, it gave Noppert a good target to aim at well up the field.

  48. For Argentina match messi will have to be tightly marked. As JB said, Whether Dutch will try to have more possession instead of the mix of short passing and long range counter attack, we witnessed yesterday. Will it be a more high pressing game to stop the south Americans whose attack originate from the back line.what are your thoughts.

  49. Now we are goin to face the most overrated team in this Wc Hope we thrash them by 4-0 just like in 74Wc..i will have multiple oragsm when we beat them….
    I was cricitical of Blind and dumfries both stayed up in the pitch had a wonderful game..may be this was possible beacsue they were alllowed too much space on wings…Lets see how they does Vs arjentina…Timber for Messi..Man mark ..Just like nijel did in 2014…happily this time there is no macherano to tore his ass to save arjntina..

  50. Cheers Jan, and cheers to all

    Always appreciate a masterclass by Louis van Gaal!

    And let’s give it up for 32 year old Daley Blind, of course the goal and assist but also leading the game in tackles.
    What a World Cup record he’s got now, and maybe a point to prove v Argentina? His only WC loss to them in Brazil on those penalties.
    De Vrij and Memphis the only other 2 remaining players who played that one if I recall..

    And it occured to me versus US what a miss Wijnaldum is here. Get well soon Gini

    Hup Holland ! 🍊🧡

  51. Yesterday, Swiss TV was showing pre-game interviews of Swiss “fans” going to the stadium before the 🇨🇭-Serbia game. All with Swiss jerseys, little flags, swiss flag makeup, the works.

    Except, ahem, most of them were from India, Pakistan, etc. For the life of them, they couldn’t name a single swiss player. One of them even offered a “Messi, maybe?” when asked who his favourite swiss player was. 🙄😆🤣

  52. Against Argentina we will have to play in front of a huge arg fan base. It is estimated about 30000 fans have traveled there to see Messi. As far as I can tell from TV angels, the orange army of supporters is lacking a bit in size. It also worries me that everybody (perhaps including officials) wants to see Messi lift a WC and a star struck referee can really screw us. It will feel 1978 all over again.
    Anyway we have a few days to breathe.

    1. Why all the Griezmann hate, Guillaume? This would seem to be the least annoying hairstyle he’s offered up internationally. Although it does appear that a little bit of his frosting spilled over onto Giroud’s hair too 😉

        1. They have not been inspiring, that’s for sure. And surely its frustrating to hold such a talented team in check for 95% of the half just to give up an easy goal at the end.

          It’s a toss-up for me here. Seeing France exit would be great, but having to watch Poland play another match would not be.

          Maybe we’ll see a better Poland in the second half now that they actually will have to try to score?

          1. I thought Poland played ok, nothing like the boring stuff of the group games. They did not seem impressed by the French.

            Swiss TV announcers just said France’s lead was a hold-up, 😆. Us French speaking swiss are maybe not impartial when France is playing, though, lol.

          2. Poland was admittedly a little bit better. You sort of get glimpses of what they might be able to do if they really worked to attack. Maybe we’ll see some more of that now.

            Watching these teams really reinforces what a team game football is. Giroud has not been the number one scoring option really at any point in his club career, and yet he is now France’s all-time leading scorer! Whereas Lewandowski continues to star as an individual scorer, whether at Dortmund, Bayern or Barcelona, but really can’t do much of anything with Poland. The guys (and system) around you really matter!

    1. That Giroud record may not be held for very long if Mbappe keeps this up. Even Fontaine’s French WC record might be in reach soon.

      Lewandowski gets saved with a stupid hesitation penalty. But France entered the box too soon, so here’s another one… The second time it works

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