Oranje: The Final Countdown….

It seems like I simply can’t take a little break. A lot happening in football, alright. Frank de Boer and Bert van Marwijk sacked, media campaigning for the inclusion in Oranje of Frenkie de Jong and Sophyan Amrabat. Ronald Koeman under pressure. Dutch champions given football lessons by England’s #3…

And in a couple of weeks time, it’s game time! With Dick and Ruud announcing their pre-lim squad.

Frank de Boer became the first victim in the Premier League but most likely not the last one. The Palace board wanted to radically change the way the club has been playing for more than a century. They did their homework, they made the plans and signed Frank de Boer for 3 years. The owners were ecstatic. And after 4 matches (!) the club panics, the board suddenly doesn’t want to change anymore, the long term vision get torn up and Frank de Boer (and Orlando Trustfull) can pack their bags.


What a disgrace!

Frank de Boer, former world-class libero and NT captain, won 4 titles with Ajax and is now suddenly incapable of turning a mediocre club around? It simply takes time. Disappointing decision by Crystal Palace who have dug up old-hand Woy Hodgson.

Bert van Marwijk’s exit was different. Now the Saudis have qualified, everyone wants a piece of the pie. Bert did the work but several yesmen are now putting their hands up to finish the job. Bert was offered a new deal with non-negotiable terms that Bert didn’t like. For instance, Bert had to live in Saudi Arabia and ask for permission to leave the country. Bert didn’t think that was a good plan and as a result he is now out.

Of all Dutch coaches working in top football at the moment, Van Marwijk’s achievement is most likely the most impressive.

Feyenoord lost 0-4 vs Man City. And deservedly so, even though Feyenoord helped City in the first 10 minutes with their woeful defending. Three goals from set pieces. Boys vs Men.

But the media slashed Feyenoord with terms as “shameful” and “Appalling”. But was it? Sure, the first goal was a shocker. Not enough pressure on the ball with the cross, Botteghin not attacking the cross and Vilhena allowing the ball to roll through his legs. But no matter how silly it looked, a player can be wrongfooted. Vilhena switched his weight to the other leg, just when the ball ricocheted through his legs. It can happen.

tony mancity

But Man City scoring four is not a disgrace. It would have been a disgrace (for Man City) if they didn’t. They brought in two subs during the second half, two players valued more than the whole of the Eredivisie!

And despite Feyenoord’s loss vs PSV Eindhoven, they outplayed PSV in the second half, with only 10 men. I think we needn’t worry about Feyenoord.

Oranje is a different matter. Dick and Ruud have two games left to win, score a lot of goals and pray that we won’t end up as the worst #2.

For this, we need to play in a system that makes sense to the players (4-3-3) and with players in form and capable of doing what we need to do: win and score.

Dick called up Ryan Babel and Klaas Jan Huntelaar. Babel is in top form. He’s fit, physical, opportunistic, can play on several positions and has his mojo back. Huntelaar still lives for goals and he played himself into the Ajax 1 starting line up. Good decisions. Daryl Janmaat is back too. Got his fitness and starting berth back. Scored a goal and is his ever dynamic self, bringing experience to the squad.


Kenny Tete will most likely be the best choice for the RB spot. Cillesen should be the goalie, for me. Dick could use Blind with De Vrij in the centre of defence with Fosu Mensah on the LB spot. Blind’s build up from the centre is needed and Tim Fosu Mensah will use his power to dominate the channel.

Up front, Babel, Huntelaar and Robben will do nicely, with the biggest question marks left open for the midfield. Wijnaldum and Strootman disappointed. Sneijder doesn’t seem fit enough. But it’s not the right time to experiment with Toornstra or Van Ginkel, while Klaassen simply doesn’t play enough. Frenkie de Jong could be an option as playmaker – albeit it an experiment as well – but the 20 year old is not selected.

Dick has to make some decisions here. Maybe Robben in the Sneijder role? With Babel on the right and Memphis on the left? We do need goals.

More good news: Vincent Janssen scored a goal from open play in Turkey and Virgil van Dijk has rejuvenated his career at Southampton, making his first minutes again.


Lastly, the KNVB has started to turn things around.

New chair of the board of directors is no-nonsense man Jan Smit. This entrepreneur (debt-collector) has led Heracles Almelo for decades before. Never got into trouble financially, knows a lot of people in football, is highly respected and an experience football manager.

Eric Gudde is the new general manager. Gudde was in this role for Feyenoord for 10 years. He started in the dark days, when there was no money at the club, lots of losses, and no success whatsoever for the once biggest club in the world. With Martin van Geel as his technical director, Gudde turned the club from a struggling behemoth into a financially healthy and highly successful and popular side. Plans for a new stadium are in a final stage, the youth academy is rocking and Feyenoord boasts to have the finest pitch in Europe. He was the man, last season, who decided to support the young coach (Van Bronckhorst) who failed to win in a series of 7 matches. And he left, after the same coach won three trophies in 15 months.


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    1. Definitely. There is no question about it. He’s in amazing form and one of the best in the world. If you want goals Him and Robben are the best people to call on

      1. When I saw him at MU, he did too many failed dribbles. If he cannot get past a defender, what he did was back pass.

        When I saw him on Youtube, before moving to MU, I think he was the next RVN.

        I do not watch him at Ligue 1 so often, but I hope he has transformed into a more solid striker/winger.

        Good luck!

        1. he still cant dribble past players theses days but from open play he has looked quite dangerous. his set pieces have been good also and for me watching him at Lyon, he looks like more a midfielder than winger.

          1. Actually, what was his role when he was still at PSV? I mean before moving to MU. He was a top scorer then.

            When moving to MU, he was expected to become the new Ronaldo and wear number 7 shirt.

            Hope the best for him.

    1. I hope that DA has found the secret weapon to beat Belarusia and Sweden. It was like when he found the “formula” to beat Scotland in 2004. As we know that in 2004, Holland almost can not qualify to the Euro 2004 competition.

      One secret weapon, at that time, was Wesley Sneijder. And, he did not field RVN dan Kluivert together as starters.

      1. @Bobotoh…..
        FYI..Holland was never in danger in ECQ2004..As it was a 2 horse race in that group with Cezh rep…As both teams were gurenteed of play off spot…..Now SITUVATION IS DIFFERENT…
        We got a Just Scotland ….we lost 1-0 by unluck in away match…that we erased in return match…WE WERE ALWAYS IN CONTROL….
        what kind of danger u r talking in 2004??

          1. thats not a danger at all..u said we had no chances at all….we just had to beat them who got lucky victory against us on waya match..We were heavy weights for them…Now scenario is different..pLEASE dont compare both situations..

  1. It’s going to be interesting. First we need to win both games but also trying to score as many goals as possible!!!.

    Promes should start ahead of Depay.

  2. I went to the Amsterdam Arena to watch the game against Bulgarie. I am from Mexico and it was my first time watching our Oranje live!. Holland’s fans are the best!, even with France beating us 4-0 some days earlier the fans were very positive, supporting the team and it’d be a shame if Holland don’t qualify not only because in big tournaments Holland is usually a joy to watch but also because its fans are amazing!!!.

    I could see some things that cameras don’t show. Janssen is hungry, he was always moving to get the ball, he linked up well with Propper and Promes and I would start him against Belarus and see how things go. I think he can be a great striker, he simply had to compete with Kane who was 100% adapted to the EPL but if he plays week in week out he can reach his full potential.

      1. I think that Janssen is a good option when we press, as he provides a lot of energy as the first defender.

        Otherwise, I think he’s better as a player that sets up others and needs strong scoring options around him — Robben, Promes, Depay, etc.

  3. Guys note NT needs goals, not shots on target.if in all the game they keep pressing and cant score goals, it will jus be a waste.jus like Lux, belarus will also come in the game with high spirts and its important before half time atleast NT are 3-0 up. This will defintely break that spirt and in thr second half the flood gates can open.

      1. Exactly. It didn’t go our way for the euro qualifiers so that means it will for these qualifiers. Plus it was only the euros nobody even tries in it. Portugal won that’s how sad it is.

      2. But, this time is harder compared to Euro 2016.

        Holland not only need a winning, but must score lots of goals. And, still have to wait the result between Sweden vs Luxembourg.

  4. Hi all, I personally rate Memphis very high but the pressure of everyone saying he’s a star and the move from Eredivisie to EPL was too big. The expectations, the 7 jersey, the hype. He was still a kid and trying to prove himself too much.

    In Holland, he had more space and shoddy defending so he could score more. The PSV team was solid too, he played like a second striker.

    Not sure if I would play him. Still need to figure out a line up. Babel…. Promes….Robben….Memphis….Janssen….Huntelaar….

    1. Babel is back with vengeance,Roben is class we could do with Both..with strong hardworking intelligent midefeild with defense..
      Willims–Vilhena–Vande beek—Janmaat
      or 442

  5. Have NT found the new DM. Crystal palace finally win under New coach Roy Hodgson beating huddesfield 1-0.jairo Riedewald will give Hodgson plenty to think about after his performance at DM which received good reviews from critics as well especially with his distribution and breaking of play down in the centre. Looks like hodgson has brought the x factor which was missing with FDB. Surely he will again get the nod at DM in the weekend vs man city.

      1. hi, fellow Indonesian! 😀

        oh, and about Foor… he’s one of players w/ Indonesian heritage that have been drafted by our Ministry of Youth&Sports some time ago. we’ve been naturalizing some of Dutch players (Bachdim, Walian, Lilipaly, Sergio Van Dijk)

        he’s quite good. regular starter too. I’d be happier if he outgrows Vitesse and move to the top 3 clubs, then somehow get into the Dutch NT instead of Indonesian. LOL.

  6. Jong orange. This is full squad selection in my opinon.

    Ilias Alhaft (Sparta Rotterdam), Pelle van Amersfoort (sc Heerenveen), Hidde ter Avest (FC Twente), Juninho Bacuna (FC Groningen), Riechedly Bazoer (VfL Wolfsburg), Steven Bergwijn (PSV), Justin Bijlow (Feyenoord), Damian van Bruggen (VVV-Venlo), Kevin Diks (Feyenoord), Joël Drommel (FC Twente), Rick van Drongelen (Hamburger SV), Denzel Dumfries (sc Heerenveen), Jay-Roy Grot (Leeds United AFC), Jeremy Helmer (AZ), Justin Hoogma (TSG 1899 Hoffenheim), Oussama Idrissi (FC Groningen), Frenkie de Jong (Ajax), Gervane Kastaneer (1. FC Kaiserslautern), Justin Kluivert (Ajax), Sam Lammers (PSV), Yanick van Osch (PSV), Thomas Ouwejan (AZ), Bart Ramselaar (PSV), Jaïro Riedewald (Crystal Palace FC), Pablo Rosario (PSV), Jeremiah St. Juste (Feyenoord), Guus Til (AZ) en Richairo Zivkovic (KV Oostende).

  7. We need a ton of goals against Belarus. Need to field 11 hungry,focused and athletic players and play for all or nothing against Belarus. Forget flashy players like Depay, he will never change or reach his hype. I am fine with Babel, Dost and all other proven scorers. No Jansen please. In addition to scoring we need not concede and it will be tough against Belarus which always is dangerous.
    Regarding qualification I won’t hold my breath. Close to 0% chance not because of math but because this team is not up to task.

  8. I can believe I’m saying this, but maybe we need to emulate Mourinho’s Manchester United side for this final set of qualification matches. His team (at least this season) is great at getting an early lead, then sitting back and wearing out the opposition, and scoring a bunch of goals at the very end.

  9. In completely unrelated news, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was onstage at a finance forum with Dutch PM Mark Rutte and wearing Chewbacca socks. Fantastic!

      1. I think he desrves a second chance. Im still not convinced with Ramselaar at no 10. even vs Feyenoord where Cocu left him on the bench looked better effective with van Ginkel and Periero combo.

          1. I just watched the highlights. Maher had a phenomenal game. There’s no way he shouldn’t play in the world cup

      2. this is the problem with dutch football. A player plays a good game(s) vs an amateur team/ average team -> premature/inappropriate call up -> everyone scratching their heads over why the NT doesn’t impress.

        If its that easy to get in the NT then its probably not gonna be that great a NT.

        NT call ups should be judged by:
        – Consistent performance
        – experience at a higher level of football
        – How they’ve handled previous NT games

        Don’t get me wrong, i want maher to get back into the groove and work himself back into the mix. But unrealistic standards will only lead to disappointment.

  10. If babel, dost and promes play then oranje might score more goals i feel but memphis, janssen no way but robben must play like if promes.robben doesnot do anything or does not find form babel. Babel plays both right winger and at left wing.Kenny tete andfosu mensah seems to be in fine form. I will say play nathan ake or blind as defensive midfielder as they can switch to attack also.Van dijk must come back for good and hopefully in form

    1. Dost is a Joke….with Fluke goals…with Dost and Depay there is no cohesive and connetive play in final third…like Wiijnaldum-Strootman combo..Dost-Depay is another failed combination as well…
      Propper is a clinical finisher and poacher..i would use him as false striker if Janssen is out of form…
      Against Belarus we need jetro williams as LB..
      Blind can play as DM with Vilhena and van de beek…

    1. Adam Maher was instrumental in U21 Isreal turnament with fit and energetic strootman and Ginkel with wingers Wijnaldum and Ola john…Corpot betryed Bruma and selected van der hoorn for Bruma..Once De vrij got subbed we lost that game vs italy…that was a nice dutch team,with lots of conncetive play and energy…
      He is so good at small space has venom in his pass..if he works hard like kuyt he should be our undisputed playmaker 10..
      lack of game time has put him in to wilderness in his early PSV days..

  11. I saw Adam Maher play too. He was exceptional. Workrate, great passing, distance strike in the top corner, half volley in the bottom corner. Outstanding!

    I hope he’s back for good. One of the few real players we have.

    1. Doesn’t mean he’s bad. If he was in bad form he would be on the bench. You don’t go from starter to not in the squad in one game. There’s something going on behind the scenes we don’t know. It happens all the time. He is playing quite well actually

        1. He could be resting. And he might have an injury that they are covering up. You can’t draw conclusions like that. they are facing an awful team anyways theres no need for him to play they can still win

  12. I’ve seen comments posted here by Cruyff and van Gaal previously, but I really hope that Memphis is like Kevin Durant and is defending his honor under the “Depay9 is the best” login 😀

  13. Bazoer didn’t even play against Bayern. He can’t be called if he doesn’t play.

    Paul Verhaegh played very well actually as RB.

    Memphis not included is a bad sign. I don’t know why he wasn’t included because he was playing better but if he did some stupid stuff it’s time for him to grow up.

    Fer played the other day and gave a great assist. I’d play him the last 20 minutes to score a good header just like he did against Chile.

  14. Someone please tell me why Monaco would pay 15 million euros for kongolo when they aren’t even gonna put him in their squad. He hasn’t even had a chance yet

          1. Ligue 1 is not eredivisie. As usually you are jus opening you hole without knowing. Go and watch Monaco games.kongolo will have to work hard if he wants to get a starting place.

          2. @Wilson…u r so biased and dumb towards Kongolo…Kongolo played in WC and he has played vs top teams,he did very exceptionally good,rock solid..u tw@@#t…

  15. I mentioned previously the amusement I find in the comments to the UK’s Guardian football articles. The comments to the Everton game write up today included the following exchange:

    Koeman’s smugness will be unbearable, though I’m glad it was Niasse who won the day.

    Bergkamp aside, show me a Dutchman who isn’t smug.

    The only two responses:

    Father Abraham?

    The drummer out of Golden Earring?

  16. VI magazine has shown in am article that hans hateboer who plays as a defensive midfielder is a good choice for Dutch team. I saw in whoscored.com a football analytics site that he is good with near seven rating. With good concentration, short oasses, aerialy good, offensive also and with out any weaknesses which is significant. Oranje managers must look at this option I feel.

  17. Watching Brighton and Newcastle today, in part to watch Propper, and in part because there’s no other game on. Brighton is currently just outside the relegation zone where is Newcastle is just outside the top six. Brighton has shown a lot of energy though and has been flying forward at every opportunity on the counter. unfortunately that approach approach pretty much bypasses Propper, and the only time he gets involved is when they run out of ideas and start cycling the ball around. It will be interesting to see if / how his game changes playing at this style and pace . 0-0 at the half…

    1. Brighton with the lead off a set piece and almost a second moments later. however, they’ve generally conceded possession since, with the last 15 minutes all Newcastle with Propper slowing walking the midfield.

      10 minutes to go…

      1. Brighton holds on for the 1-0 victory, with Propper playing as a slightly advanced center back for the final 10 minutes

        They had several bright moments, but once they took the lead, Brighton closed up shop

        I don’t know that I blame them, but not a scintillating second half by any means

  18. Thinking about Propper and his overall lack of pace got me thinking about other Dutchmen who’ve done well in the Premier League without a lot of speed. My thoughts immediately turned to Rafael van der Vaart, who unfortunately can’t seem to get any game action for FC Midtjylland currently.

    Here’s a short article summarizing his career. He really was fantastic for Tottenham…


    1. It was a really nice goal I can’t deny that but you have to consider the game was already 6-1 and the Utrecht defenders probably just gave up at that point

  19. I think Netherlands will have to switch up the formation after watching the PSV game. PSV went from a 4-3-3 and playing good and they switched to a 5-3-2 against Utrecht and hammered them 7-1. Looks like that may be the best idea

  20. Its not looking good at all for dutch. Apart from PSVs big win and off course Robben goal for Bayern, it was another week of boring football for dutchies.turkish football naaaaa.crystal palace; stoke, swansea, bournemouth are all in the red zone in epl and all scumbed to defeat featuring most dutch players.Depay is formless at lyon and doesnt even make the bench. Blind is subject to rotation at Man United. Promes also has quieten down in russia. Wijnaldum is playing in shadows of versatlie liverpool forwards.

    The attention shifts to european football this week and again its not good news.feyenoord have been hit hard after Jorgersen Injury and toornstra also looks to miss the game vs napoli.

  21. looks like we’ll be short of defenders. Van Dijk still hasn’t playing regular minutes, de Vrij out up to 3-4 weeks, de Ligt sustained head injury vs Vitesse.

        1. Augsburg have had good start to this season. Six games, no loss and are sitting 5 on the table. .they take on dortmund this week and Gouweleeuw has featured in all the games.

  22. Looking at van dijks situation if not for injuries, I dont think he will get much minutes until jan when the next window opens.as it is the board at southampton will be fully aware that he will leave the club in jan and might not wanna build the team around him.

    Also feel for clasie who also doesnt look like will get much minutes either at ClUb brugge.koeman should have signed him instead of klaassen who not build for epl intensity.I jus knew it will back fire for koeman.

          1. No you keep telling me that players like kishna bazoer and zivkovic are done when they have higher potential and are younger. if clasie can’t make it for a team like south Hampton it’s basically over

        1. @ Depay9is best. You are assuming too many things which are baseless .what im suspecting is you are not following players but bascially contemplating on something big which they were destined for few years back but never lived up to expectation. Most probably those articles on raising dutch talent which was published few years back. kishna was dubbed as on of brighest prospect when coming up in the ranks at Ajax. He was never the same after coming back from his knee injury which saw him never play for two years.he is a very injury prone player and it has continued to haunt him at lazio where he missed most of his first season after moving from Ajax, before being loaned out Lille and now again at ADO Haag where his season looks to be all but over. This is the thing, all this will add up to his CV and I dont think lazio will pay him for getting injured. He will end up in eredivisie again most probably permentely at ADO Haag. Yes in my books he is done.

          Zivikovic was another big talent at Groningen before making that wrong move to Ajax where like many others, his development also stalled to somewhat before being loaned out to Utretch.after the loan spell neither Ajax nor Utetch bothered to sign him. This jus showing the overall picture of is performance and his development which never lived up to expectations and this was one of the reason why he was relased from both clubs. Scored few goals for utretch but was overall a flop . He then signed for K.V. Oostende who are sitting bottom in beligan league where he also doesnt even feature on the bench.I just cant see how he will salavage his sinking career.

          Bazoer, I dont think I said he is done, but I will say I wasnt a big fan if his from day 1.again he was dubbed as another of those big talents coming at Ajax but his inconsistency took toll on his overall performance and this is where they sold him to make space of others like De Jong and VD Beek whom we are seeing now. I think this was further highlighted by Jan in one of his arricle by Andries Jonker who was the coach of Wolfburg.looking at the current midfielders I would live it to him to get selected if he can.

          Now coming to clasie.apart from him being also injury prone the rest his best summarized in this article and also he has already played at WC level for NT.


  23. With de lift de Vrij and van dijk probably not fit enough for the games I think our best option is riedewald and st. Juste at the back. Both quick agile defenders good at starting an attack.

  24. Lazio coach says Stephen devrij could be playing next sunday, if thats the case then no worries on that front but van dijk is not playing for southampton. kardorp continues to be in recovery stage

  25. Locadia—————Robben


    Wijnaldum————Van Ginkel




    Blind-Hoedt- De Vrij – Tete

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