Somehow, the European Tournament didn’t really overexcite anyone in Holland. It was only 4 nations, back in 1976. The tournament was a drama for us. The pitches were not that good. Refereeing wasn’t that good. And some how, the players never felt committed as there always were issues with the federation about money, about insurance and other circumstances.

In this particular case, the players looking back blame the heavy preparation by coach Jan Zwartkruis. The former army football coach used to dramatically excercise and run. In hindsight, the player complained about being too tired to cope with the games.

So when Oranje went to play the 1980 one, the country did not dress up in orange, we did not have cds coming out or little orange stupid birds being sold in the supermarket.

This is a clip of a key qualification game, against East-Germany.

In these days, there seemed to have been only one camera around the pitch. And YouTube has a limited number of Holland-related video clips of this tournament.

Here is a funny little clip of the game against Greece, in which Kees Kist scores from the spot. We won this one.

We then had to play West-Germany and lost.

And our final game was against Czechoslovakia and drew, 1-1.

Here is a short doco in Dutch of the Euro1980…

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