Tag: Verbuggen

VAR injustice against stronger France

Oranje had to fight for a point against a dominating France. The point will be cherished but despite the VAR error, Oranje couldn’t really claim to be the better team.

We all thought a sensational win was in the making when Xavi Simons ran to the Orange Legion behind the goal after good strike into the net. It took minutes for the VAR to decide that Dumfries was blocking the French goalie. Even Stevie Wonder saw how Dumfries did not block the sight on the ball and he also didn’t block any attempt, as the goalie was frozen on the spot, to slow to respond in any which way. Most if not all of the pundits ( Wayne Rooney, Cesc Fabriegas, Roy Keane, Raf van der Vaart and even the French referee boss Stephane Lannoy stated: “This goal should never have been disallowed.”. But… that doesn’t help us now.

We had a good start this time around. Koeman wanted to use Frimpong’s speed in attack and work rate in defense against Hernandez and within 50 seconds, the small former Cityzen was on on goal! After 20 interesting open minutes, the game became more and more of a chess game and Holland realised that France has a world class player on every position and their central block is made of granite. Memphis Depay, most likely still not 100% match fit, had no business against these big boys. The longer the game went on, the more it became apparent that a draw would be the best possible scenario.

Initially, it seemed the game had goals in them, with some exciting moves, but France adapted quickly to Koeman’s game plan and started to dominate the pace in the game. They controlled possession, against their nature, and Oranje was hoping on the mistake in the transition. We had some options to break but it was always “the ball too short”, “the ball not accurate” or “the ball to the wrong player” or “i will dribble instead”….

We didn’t note many clear cut chances whereas France kept on pouncing on the door. The lack of quality of our main attacker Memphis, the inability to launch Frimpong, the inability to use Ake as a playmaker… all these aspects were partly our own doing (Memphis) or a tactical move by Deschamp ( Ake).

The pace went down and the Orange Legion started to chant “Woutje Weghorst” after an hour. First Koeman brought Wijnaldum, Veerman and Geertruida, who all three had a decent run in the game. Weghorst got this 12 minutes at the end and fought for what he is worth. To no avail.

After the match, Koeman was accused of being “prudent” and “conservative” but the coach couldn’t care less: “I am happy for anyone to think what they want. I’m happy. 4 points after 2 games, I would have signed on for that.”

It was a tough game.

I think Verbruggen was excellent. His passing accuracy is astounding.He is the rightful #1.

De Vrij and Ake were exceptional as well, although Ake was forced in the full back role by France and didn’t get much chance to roam in to midfield. Deschamp had seen us versus Poland. Van Dijk was fine.

Dumfries and Frimpong did what they could but in my view they demonstrated not to be able to play well together as they want to make the same runs. I think Frimpong needs Geertuida.

Schouten was good too. Reijnders less so, he had real trouble dealing with Griezmann. I thought Simons worked his ass off and tried to be constantly available. I liked him today and he deserved to be the match winner.

Gakpo was strong first half, almost invisible second half, but in the moment he wasn’t, he was great. Frimpong had a good start but peetered out a bit. Top notch work rate though. Memphis… he tried hard, he worked hard, he tackled and slugged but the touches weren’t great and the setpieces poor…

Koeman could have seen that Geertruida would be a better starter than Dumfries. When you can’t win a game, just make sure you don’t lose it.

 

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