Gearing up to Oranje friendlies

With the lull we had in Oranje football and the newly appointed strong men finding their feet (Hoogma, Koeman) it’s time we see the Orange Lions perform again. The Eredivisie simply can’t convince us of better times to come I suppose… Ajax, the best players but inconsisent (and even worse with Ten Hag then under Keizer at the moment). PSV, on title winning course, but never impressing (bar the Feyenoord game, in which they played very good) and Feyenoord…well… disastrous really.

AZ is getting the kudos and the headlines, and rightfully so, but we’ll need to see if they can do it in big games vs big opponents as well. Usually, the bottle it against Ajax, Feyenoord and PSV.

There are some positives though, some of our Oranje candidates abroad are getting stronger and stronger. Memphis and Tete show promise. Promes shows…well…promise. De Vrij, Hateboer, De Roon, all strong. Davy Propper is getting praise from the Match of the Day punters while Mike van der Hoorn has found his role in the Swansea defense.

The number of youthful talents in the Eredivisie is on the increase as well, with quite some strong talents coming up on the radar. Soon, I’ll post an article with some up and coming stars for us.

Ronald Koeman made some big changes when he started in the job. In the olden days, a former team manager decided to have the NT stay and train in Noordwijk, in the hotel of a friend. Strange of course. Because the KNVB spent millions to build a cool sports centre in the forests of Zeist. Every athlete or sports team (Hockey, baseball, etc) would go there to be secluded, to be able to focus and have all the amenities available. The NT however, had to train miles away from the hotel at the amateur club of Katwijk (Dirk Kuyt’s former club) and logistically, this was always a drama. The players loved it there though, the more “extraverted” ones would slip away from the hotel to go to the vibrant night life of Zandvoort or The Hague to have some party time away from coaches and family.\

Media circus at Hotel Noordwijk

Under Koeman, no more. He was known to be one of those party animals when he was a player and he knows every trick in the book. (If you were a team mate of Ruud Gullit, you definitely would get a master class in slipping girls into your hotel room…yes girls…plural!). So Koeman decided to stop with that ritual of staying in Noordwijk. And he is directing his underperfoming prima donnas to go to the prison camp – a luxurious one though – in Zeist. Boom!

Koeman demands dedication, rest and professionalism on his long and winding road towards the 2020 Euros.

Koeman is quite optimistic. He believes any team or squad needs to play to their strengths AND weaknesses. “If we don’t have the world class talent of Sneijder and Robben anymore, we’ll need to use the strengths we have. If we’re not strong defensively, we need to make sure we don’t need to defend…” Cruyffian statements.

He asked the questions, rhetorical ones of course. “How is Quincy Promes doing in Moscow? Isn’t De Vrij a top defender in Italy? Has Memphis not demonstrated that he can do it? Is Wijnaldum not a highly valued player under Klopp? Didn’t Liverpool break the transfer record for Van Dijk? Can we not all see the amazing lungs and legs of AZ’s Guus Til? Aren’t we excited about Frenkie de Jong, Justin Kluivert, Donny van der Beek?”

Koeman is optimistic. But also disappointend. “When I was called up for the national team, in my days, I was proud. I was exhilarated to be part of it. I would go even when my leg had been amputated. I miss this mentality now. The pride to wear the jersey. The attitude, the mentality. When you have less quality, you simply have to give 110% of what you have. When you’re Messi or Robben or David Silva, sure, you can rely on your skills. But when you are Greece 2004, you need to spit in your hands and work work work. “Missing one tournament is highly inconvenient, but okay, it can happen. Missing two in a row, is really bad.” The only good thing for Koeman is that with Oranje and the KNVB in crisis, he could come in at his terms.

So after barely a month in the job, we can see some impact already.

The move from Noordwijk to Zeist is a big call. The players’ quarters are at walking distance from the pitches. The medical centre is right next door. There are gates around the complex, so Ronald can work in peace and without media people or scouts or managers trying to butt in.

The KNVB Sportscentre

The prelim squad selection is a second big one. No more Wesley Sneijder. Ronald Koeman did it with grace. He flew to Qatar, spoke with Sneijder, our record international, and basically said: Wes, just pull out of international games, otherwise I have to drop you. And with the former skipper and leader’s international career over, the career of new faces Til, Weghorst, Kluivert, Bizot and Padt just started. And if Frenkie de Jong wasn’t injured, his name would be on the list as well. Our team manager simply looks at players who play well consistently, so Ruud Vormer – best player in Belgium and ignored by Koeman’s predecessors – is also finally part of the prelim squad. Hans Hateboer went through a tremendous development at Atalanta and is also part of the 33-players prelim squad. Koeman’s signal is clear: I cast a wide net. If you perform well, I’ll spot you!

The third signal Koeman is giving, is hidden in the age and skillsets of the players. Ryan Babel is the only 30+ player in the squad. Koeman considers to play like Atalanta does, with three defenders and a team of fit, athletic runners (like Hateboer and De Roon). This playing style fits Koeman, who introduced it at Feyenoord and it will fit Daryl Janmaat, back in the squad, and players like Van Aanholt and Ake.

And lastly, the way Koeman organises the accessibility of the players will change. In the past, it was a media circus when the players arrived at the Hotel Oranje in Noordwijk. Not any more. There will be no press conferences to announce player selections, just a press release. There will be one Oranje training where media is welcome, but only for 15 minutes. At Southampton and Everton, Koeman worked like this. He doesn’t like media and other voyeurs to be watching when he is working. He wants peace and he wants to be able to say or shout things that should not be repeated in the papers. In England, this is accepted. In The Netherlands, the media will complain about this as the former NT managers were usually quite open. But the criticism leaves Koeman cold. He shrugs his shoulders…

“My terms!”

I personally don’t see too many surprises in the squad. Still a bit surprised that Erik Pieters isn’t called up but we do have good quality on the full back positions, with Patrick van Aanholt finding his old form again. Sven van Beek will probably get a look in later, if he keeps on performing consistently and Frenkie de Jong will also be a no-brainer.

It’s good to see Bergwijn amongst the forwards, a very bright prospect indeed.

At the same time, we have all seen how hard it is to reach and stay at top level. I think our good friend Emmanueal Tiju was blowing the horn of Kevin Diks and St Juste and Bart Ramselaar and Jorit Hendrix in the past year, but one can see how hard it is for a talented youth player to stay at the top and keep on developing. The orange jersey seems a long way out for Kevin Diks at the moment.

I saw some questions on the site about some players. My opinion below:

Bryan Linssen – good sub top forward. Already 27 years old. Quite lazy. Doesn’t give 100% for the sports, always struggling with his weight. Gifted player but not for the top. He’s at Vitesse now and I think that is his ceiling.

Idrissi – was kicked out of the Feyenoord youth and went to Groningen. Was seen as a dissonant there too. Showed promise at Groningen but finally shines now at AZ in a better team. Van de Brom is a coach who can reach Idrissi, so there is still hope for him. Very talented but also full of himself.

Ruud Vormer – also a bit long in the tooth. Lacks pace. Great player on the ball, a bit like Lasse Schone. Not an Oranje international long term.

Guus Til – great talent, wonderful runner, picking his time right and cool in the box. Pleasant personality too. Like Van Ginkel a bit. Will make it.

Wout Weghorst – reminds me of Van Nistelrooy. Hard working, very ambitious, invests a lot in himself. Will make it big(ger) due to his workrate and personality. Will not even be able to stand in the shadow of Van Basten, Kluivert, Van Nistelrooy but can be very useful.

Bart Ramselaar – was a big man at Utrecht and took a long time to find his role at PSV. Finally seems to find his game, played well in the last weeks. Too early to tell.

Expect a post on our former skipper Sneijder and our former playmaker Van der Vaart soon!

Bookmark and Share


  1. I would like to see koeman take a look at Navarone Foor of Vitesse. Utilily player who can play any where on the left.pocket rocket like Insigne and Younes but a left footer. Scored a absolute cracker against Ajax last week. Pretty much low profile player like Buttner until Man United scouted him.

    Given the selection the only others players I think that should be looked again is Riedewald, Karsdorp,locadia, Frenkie,Clasie, Van Ginkel, El Ghazi. This will give enough depth in team and quality options to build a formidable combo.

  2. Couple players that I am interested in Jan’s thoughts. I think these players are the future of Oranje.

    Malcolm Ebiowei 14 Midfield Arsenal
    Xavi Simons 14 DM Barcelona
    Noah Ohio 15 Striker Man City
    Ryan Gravenberch 15 Midfield Ajax
    Immanuel Pherai 16 Midfield Dortmund
    Teun van der Donk 16 Midfield Basel
    Enric Llansana 16 DM Ajax
    Vicente Besuijen 16 RW Roma
    Crysencio Summerville 16 RW Feyenoord
    Brian Brobbey 16 Striker Ajax
    Luca van der Gaag 16 CB Belenenses
    Joshua Zirkzee 16 Striker Bayern
    Anouar El Mhassani 16 RW Westham

    1. Whoa, well I don’t know most of these kids :-).

      I know Xavi Simons at Barca is the real deal.

      Van der Gaag at Belenses is top too.

      The rest I really can’t say. I think it’s safe to say they all have the basic skills you need to get to the top, but will their bodies and mind be good enough??

          1. Kian Slor 16 LW Groningen
            Ricuenio Kewal 16 RW AZ
            Rachad H’Maidat 16 LW Turin(on loan from Juventus)

          2. Romano Postema 17 Striker Groningen
            Zakaria Aboukhlal 18 RW PSV
            Justen Kranthove 18 CB Leicester
            Brahim Atmani 18 CM Maritimo

  3. Jurgen Ekkelenkamp 17 Midfield Ajax
    Daishawn Redan 17 Striker Chelsea
    Kees de Boer 17 DM Swansea
    Thomas Buitink 17 Striker Vitesse
    Millen Baars 17 Striker Man United
    Kik Pierie 17 CB Heerenveen
    Myron Boadu 17 Striker AZ
    Mitchel Bakker 17 LB Ajax
    Lutsharel Geertruida 17 CB Feyenoord
    Cheick Toure 17 LW Feyenoord

  4. Matthijs de Ligt 18 CB Ajax
    Justin Kluivert 18 LW Ajax
    Ferdi Kadioglu 18 Midfield NEC
    Perr Schuurs 18 CB Fortuna
    Dylan Vente 18 Striker Feyenoord
    Tyrell Malacia 18 LB Feyenoord
    Deroy Duarte 18 Midfield Sparta
    Deroy Duarte 18 LB AZ
    Nick Venema 18 Striker Utrecht
    Mitchell van Bergen 18 RW Vitesse
    Dogucan Haspolat 18 Midfield Excelsior
    Tom van de Looi 18 Midfield Groningen
    Delano Ladan 18 Striker Den Haag
    Justin Lonwijk 18 Midfield PSV
    Joël Piroe 18 Striker PSV
    Noa Lang 18 Midfield Ajax
    Boy Kemper 18 CB Ajax
    Cody Gakpo 18 LW PSV
    Leandro Fernandes 18 Midfield Juventus
    Pascal Struijk 18 CB Leeds
    Juan Castillo 18 LB Chelsea
    Jordy Wehrmann 18 Midfield Feyenoord
    Tahith Chong 18 RW Man United
    Achraf el Bouchataoui 18 Midfield Feyenoord

    1. Boris van Schuppen 18 Midfield NAC BredaStan van Ballegooij 17 Striker NEC
      Mohammed Akharaz 18 Midfield Utrecht
      Dion Versluis Striker Utrecht
      Sander Sybrandy 15 Striker Twente
      Julian Rijkhoff 15 Striker Ajax
      Yassine Tekfaoui 18 LW Utrecht
      Saydou Bangura 17 Striker Aachen
      Silvinho Esajas 18 Midfield Verona
      Yusuf Barasi 16 Striker AZ
      Lamare Bogarde 16 CB Feyenoord
      Mees Rijks 16 Striker Utrecht
      Antoni Milambo 14 Midfield Feyenoord
      Giovanni Zwikstra 18 Striker Groningen
      Anthony Musaba 18 RW NEC
      Gijs Smal 22 LB Volendam
      Elayis Tavsan 18 RW Telstar(Sparta Rotterdam)
      Reda Kharchouch 24 RW Telstar
      Jan Paul van Hecke 19 CB NAC Breda
      Mohamed Nassoh 17 Midfield PSV
      Emre Ates 17 CB ADO Den Haag
      Yoram Boerhout 14 Striker Heerenveen

  5. Justin Hoogma 19 CB TSG Hoffenheim
    Jay-Roy Grot 19 Striker Leeds
    Sherell Floranus 19 RB Sparta
    Calvin Stengs 19 RW AZ
    Armando Obispo 19 CB PSV
    Donyell Malen 19 Striker PSV
    Joey Veerman 19 DM FC Volendam
    Kaj Sierhuis 19 Striker Ajax
    Ché Nunnely 19 RW Ajax
    Mink Peeters 19 LW Almere
    Emanuel Boateng 19 CB Lazio
    Rick van Drongelen 19 CB Hamburger
    Giovanni Troupée 19 RB Utrecht
    Nathan Markelo 19 CB Everton
    Jordan van der Gaag 19 Midfield NAC
    Javairô Dilrosun 19 LW Man City
    Bobby Adekanye 19 RW Liverpool

  6. Donny van de Beek 20 Midfield Ajax
    Frenkie de Jong 20 Midfield Ajax
    Timothy Fosu-Mensah 20 RB Crystal Palace
    Steven Bergwijn 20 LW PSV
    Guus Til 20 Midfield AZ
    Sam Lammers 20 Striker PSV
    Michel Vlap 20 Midfield Heerenveen
    Juninho Bacuna 20 Midfield Groningen
    Hidde ter Avest 20 RB Twente
    Teun Koopmeiners 20 DM AZ
    Jeremy Helmer 20 AM AZ
    Justin Bijlow 20 GK Feyenoord
    Carel Eiting 20 DM Ajax
    Kenneth Paal 20 Midfield PSV
    Yanick van Osch 20 GK PSV
    Deyovaisio Zeefuik 20 RB Groningen
    Calvin Verdonk 20 LB NEC
    Dani de Wit 20 Midfield Ajax
    Rodney Kongolo 20 DM Doncaster
    Vince Gino Dekker 20 LW Ajax
    Gino van den Berg 20 CB Hamburger

  7. Bart Ramselaar 21 Midfield PSV
    Riechedly Bazoer 21 DM Wolfsburg
    Jeremiah St. Juste 21 CB Feyenoord
    Jairo Riedewald 21 CB Crystal Palace
    Denzel Dumfries 21 RB Heerenveen
    Richairo Zivkovic 21 Striker KV Oostende
    Thomas Ouwejan 21 LB AZ
    Philippe Sandler 21 CB PEC
    Kevin Diks 21 RB Feyenoord
    Pelle van Amersfoort 21 Midfield Heerenveen
    Alessio Da Cruz 21 LW Parma
    Arnaut Groeneveld 21 LW NEC
    Dabney dos Santos 21 LW Sparta
    Jeroen van der Lely 21 RB Twente
    Pablo Rosario 21 Midfield PSV
    Joël Drommel 21 GK Twente
    Jari Schuurman 21 Midfield NEC
    Gervane Kastaneer 21 LW 1.FC K’lautern
    Patrick Joosten 21 LW Utrecht
    Finn Stokkers 21 Striker Fortuna
    Jesper Verlaat 21 CB W. Bremen
    Pelle Clement 21 Midfield Reading
    Abdelmajid Bouali 21 Midfield Dortmund
    Anfernee Dijksteel 21 RB Charlton

  8. Kenny Tete 22 RB Lyon
    Anwar El Ghazi 22 RW Lille
    Derrick Luckassen 22 CB PSV
    Daley Sinkgraven 22 LB Ajax
    Gyrano Kerk 22 RW Utrecht
    Kingsley Ehizibue 22 RB PEC
    Oussama Idrissi 22 LW AZ
    Clint Leemans 22 Midfield Venlo
    Bart Nieuwkoop 22 RB Feyenoord
    Djavan Anderson 22 RB FC Bari

  9. Nathan Aké 23 CB Bournemouth
    Vincent Janssen 23 Striker Fenerbahce
    Tonny Vilhena 23 Midfield Feyenoord
    Rick Karsdorp 23 RB Roma
    Karim Rekik 23 CB Hertha
    Jetro Willems 23 LB Frankfurt
    Jorrit Hendrix 23 DM PSV
    Sven van Beek 23 CB Feyenoord
    Joshua Brenet 23 LB PSV
    Joris van Overeem 23 Midfield AZ
    Jean-Paul Boëtius 23 RW Feyenoord
    Joost van Aken 23 CB Sheff Wed
    Ricardo Kishna 23 LW Den Haag

      1. DM? Is that Defensive MId? That is old thinking…

        What role are you referring to? A destroyer? I think in today’s game, we need multi functional players. Like Vilhena, Frenkie de Jong, De Roon, Wijnaldum.

  10. @ Bobotoh

    The situation of Lewandoski at Bayern is quiet different to that of NT if you consider the likes of Dost or huntelaar who often get isolated with Robben around. No doubt bayern is stable and has got quality in all most all department and hence no one can take a bigger piece of cake. Apart from Robben and Ribbery, the midfilders also have a strong hold in middle and this is where lewandoski has been sucessfully in getting quality ball.

    The other thing you have to note is the rate of scoring for lewandoski when Robben and Ribbery are not playing. Also in CL when Robben and Ribbery come up with tougher defenders, they are forced to assist/pass.

  11. Memphis Depay 24 LW Lyon
    Wesley Hoedt 24 CB Southampton
    Terence Kongolo 24 CB Huddersfield
    Jürgen Locadia 24 Striker Brighton
    Ridgeciano Haps 24 LB Feyenoord
    Vura 24 LW Ludogorets
    Stefano Denswil 24 CB FC Brügge
    Hans Hateboer 24 RB Atlanta
    Timo Letschert 24 CB Sassuolo
    Adam Maher 24 AM Twente
    Joey Pelupessy 24 DM Sheff Wed
    Mark Flekken 24 GK Duisburg

  12. Davy Klaassen 25 Midfield Everton
    Marco van Ginkel 25 Midfield PSV
    Wout Weghorst 25 Striker AZ
    Mustafa Saymak 25 Midfield PEC
    Mike van der Hoorn 25 CB Swansea
    Warner Hahn 25 GK Heerenveen
    Mitchell Dijks 25 LB Ajax
    Luc Castaignos 25 Striker Vitesse
    Ola John 25 LW Benfica

  13. Virgil van Dijk 26 CB Liverpool
    Stefan de Vrij 26 CB Lazio
    Quincy Promes 26 LW Spartak Moskau
    Marten de Roon 26 Midfield Atlanta
    Davy Pröpper 26 Midfield Brighton
    Bruno Martins Indi 26 CB Stoke City
    Steven Berghuis 26 RW Feyenoord
    Jeffrey Bruma 26 CB Wolfsburg
    Jordy Clasie 26 DM Brugge
    Joël Veltman 26 RB Ajax
    Jeffrey Gouweleeuw 26 CB Augsburg
    Yanic Wildschut 26 LW Cardiff
    Rajiv van La Parra 26 RW Huddersfield
    Ricardo van Rhijn 26 RB AZ

  14. Georginio Wijnaldum 27 Midfield Liverpool
    Jeroen Zoet 27 GK PSV
    Patrick van Aanholt 27 LB Crystal Palace
    Luuk de Jong 27 Striker PSV
    Luciano Narsingh 27 RW PSV
    Sergio Padt 27 GK Groningen
    Marvin Zeegelaar 27 LB Watford
    Bram Nuytinck 27 CB Udinese
    Bryan Linssen 27 LW Vitesse
    Marco Bizot 27 GK AZ

  15. Kevin Strootman 28 Midfield Roma
    Daley Blind 28 LB Man United
    Bas Dost 28 Striker Sporting
    Jasper Cillessen 28 GK Barcelona
    Leroy Fer 28 Midfield Swansea
    Daryl Janmaat 28 RB Watford
    Jens Toornstra 28 Midfield Feyenoord
    Nick Viergever 28 CB Ajax
    Vurnon Anita 28 DM Leeds
    Marko Vejinović 28 DM AZ

  16. Ruud Vormer 29 DM Brugge
    Erik Pieters 29 LB Stoke City
    Ricky van Wolfswinkel 29 Striker Basel
    Siem de Jong 29 Midfield Ajax
    Tjaronn Chery 29 Midfield GZ Hengfeng
    Tim Krul 29 GK Brighton
    Erwin Mulder 29 GK Swansea
    Mitchell Donald 29 Midfield Roter Stern
    Alexander Büttner 29 LB Vitesse

  17. Jeremain Lens 30 RW Besiktas
    Jan-Arie van der Heijden 30 CB Feyenoord
    Diego Biseswar 30 Midfield PAOK
    Robbin Ruiter 30 GK Sunderland
    Jonathan de Guzmán 30 Midfield Frankfurt
    Roy Beerens 30 RW Vitesse
    Gregory van der Wiel 30 RB Toronto
    Douglas 30 CB Sporting
    Ryan Babel 31 LW Besiktas
    Ibrahim Afellay 31 Midfield Stoke City
    Eljero Elia 31 LW Basaksehir
    Kenneth Vermeer 32 GK Brugge

  18. Players who are too old to be considered or already retired from national teem:
    Wesley Sneijder 33 AM Al Gharafa
    Ron Vlaar 33 CB AZ
    Nigel de Jong 33 DM Mainz
    Arjen Robben 34 RW Bayern
    Michel Vorm 34 GK Tottenham
    Klaas-Jan Huntelaar 34 Striker Ajax
    Robin van Persie 34 Striker Feyenoord
    Stijn Schaars 34 DM Heerenveen
    Paul Verhaegh 34 RB Wolfsburg
    Maarten Stekelenburg 35 GK Everton
    Rafael van der Vaart 36 AM Midtjylland

  19. There are also a list of players who never reached their potential, or whose development slows down tremendously at a certain stage. These players or kids played really well against their peers from other countries at their youth (17-20) but after that age there seems to be a gap compared to young players in other countries. I would like to see your insights on how these players failed, or if their career is still salvagable, or if there is a system problem? I do think the national coaches for U20 and U21 in the last couple years are of really poor quality. See list of players below.

  20. Diego Biseswar 30 Midfield
    Played ok for Feyenoord at a young age. Now playing for PAOK in Greece. Never played for national team.
    Marvin Emnes 29 Striker
    Played pretty well for Middlesbrough, very skillful striker, now benchwarmer for Akhisarspor in Turkish League.
    Lorenzo Ebecilio 26 Midfield
    Played decently in his debut season at Ajax, now playing for Apoel in Cyprus.
    Luc Castaignos 25 Striker
    Rated really high when he was young, played pretty well for Twente after his failed transfer to Inter, had a couple good games with Frankfurt as well. Now only a bench player for Vitesse.
    Danzell Gravenberch 24 CB
    Used to be a striker for Ajax youth, very strong and powerful,scored a bunch of goals. Now changed to a CB and loaned to Belgian 2nd league.
    Anass Achahbar 24 Striker
    Very agile and skillful player, with a great touch, now playing decently for NEC.
    Elton Acolatse 22 LW
    Played pretty well for Ajax Youth and also in the Nextgen Series. Now only a benchwarmer for St. Truiden in Belgian League.
    Queensy Menig 22 LW
    Also played well for Ajax youth and in Nextgen series. Now playing for PEC and does not look too special anymore.
    Jeroen Lumu 22 RW
    Very fast and explosive winger, made Eredivisie debut at a young age. Attracted a lot of interest from big teams in Europe when his young. Now playing in India.
    Anthony Berenstein 21 RW
    Great player at U17 stage, had a bunch of goals and assists. Missed U17 final tournament due to a serious injury, faded after that and now playing for Volendam 2nd team.
    Dani van der Moot 21 Striker
    Also pretty good at U17 stage, scored a bunch of goals, now barely plays for PSV 2nd team.
    Marlon Slabbekoorn 21 Midfield
    Used to be a gem in Feyenoord youth system, great skills. Now only playing for Den Bosch 2nd team.
    Jari Schuurman 21 Midfield
    Top player at U17 Tournament, he was at the same level of Nouri and Van de Beek, now played ok on loan at NEC.
    Segun Owobowale 20 LW
    Tall and strong striker, played well in U17, now only playing for NEC 2nd team.
    Adham El Idrissi 20 Striker
    Rated high in Ajax Youth, scored a bunch of goals in youth leagues, now playing in amateur level in Netherlands.
    Vince Gino Dekker 20 LW
    Tall, explosive and skillful in youth leagues, used to impress a lot. I thought he had a serious injury last year?

    To be followed.

    1. Dirk Marcellis 29 CB
      Rated pretty high at PSV when he was young, then faded after his injury.Debut for national team at a young age and played 3 games then never get involved again. Now a starter at PEC.
      Género Zeefuik 27 Midfield
      Rated pretty high at Arsenal Youth, played well for Utrecht later on but never reach to the national team. Now playing decently for Y. Malatyaspo in Turkish League.
      Género Zeefuik 27 Striker
      Scoring for fun at U21 stage, now without a team. I hear he had weight issues?
      Kelvin Leerdam 27 RB
      Played a lot of games for U21. Good player in Feyenoord Youth. Had great times at Vitesse and used to bet against Van Aanholt who will have better combined goal+assist stats couples seasons ago. Now starter at Sounders in MLS.
      Ola John 25 LW
      He impressed me a lot when he was at Twente, fast and smart player, his crossing ability and decision was really really good. Had a pretty good first season at Benfica, was also important during their European League run. Liverpool wanted to buy him after that but Benfica didn’t sell,and after that it is almost all downhill, except he had a couple decent games when on loan at Wolves then got injured. I used to think he can be very good but now only in Benfica’s B team.
      Elvis Manu 24 LW
      Strong, fast and explosive winger, played well against Roma in European League, and gathered some serious interest from them. Now playing alright for Genclerbirligi in Turkish league.
      Kyle Ebecilio 24 Midfield
      Top player at U17 tournament. Almost made it to Arsenal first team at a young age. After transfer to Twente for a season all went downhill and he got some weird muscle injury later on? Now without a team.
      Gyliano van Velzen 23 LW
      Transferred to Man United at a young age. Impressed the scouts a lot. Now a regular player for Roda.
      Dennis van der Heijden 21 Striker
      Scored some important goals at a young age during his debut season at Den Haag, played well for U20 as well. Now a decent starter on loan at Almere.
      Branco van den Boomen 22 Midfield
      Very tall Midfield, played well at Ajax Youth and also impressed in Nextgen Series. I thought he was Ajax youth captain as well. Now only a starter for FC Eindhoven.

  21. A lot of players were also lost to other countries, these players might have an impact now or in the last couple years if they chose to play for the Netherlands. Did KNVB tried their best to retain them? And what do you think of each of these lost players?
    Haris Medunjanin 33 Midfield Bosnia 59/9
    Moubarak Boussoufa 33 Midfield Morocco 55/7
    Karim El Ahmadi 33 Midfield Morocco 47/1
    Mounir El Hamdaoui 33 Striker Morocco 15/3
    Nordin Amrabat 30 RW Morocco 40/4
    Oussama Assaidi 29 LW Morocco 17/2
    Ismail Aissati 29 Midfield Morocco 2/0
    Aras Özbiliz 28 Midfield Armenia RW 34/6
    Garry Rodrigues 27 LW Kap Verde 23/4
    Leandro Bacuna 26 RB Curacao 14/5
    Anouar Kali 26 DM Morocco U23
    Zakaria Labyad 25 Midfield Morocco 5/0
    Deniz Türüc 25 Midfield Turkey 1/0
    Used to be a very good player at Go Ahead Eagles and also was their captain, got a good long shot, he was always under the radar only played one game for Dutch U20.
    Oguzhan Özyakup 25 Midfield Turkey 32/1
    Adnane Tighadouini 25 LW Morocco 1/0
    Yassin Ayoub 24 Midfield Morocco 0/0
    He was pretty good through out his youth stage Dutch national team, a pretty good tackler, attracted interest from Juventus, played really well for Utrecht, but I heard he had personality issues.
    Hakim Ziyech 24 AM Morocco 13/7
    Huge loss. He was overlooked multiple times at U21 level already when he was playing for Herenveen under Van Basten. I think KNVB did not even try that hard to retain him. He had some personality issues as well as he had a lot of disagreement with the Moroccan coach. Maybe this is the reason that KNVB did not try?
    Ouasim Bouy 24 Midfield Morocco 0/0
    Rated pretty high when he was young, transferred to Juventus at a young age. Then his development slowed, until he played some good football at PEC and called up by Morocco.
    William Troost-Ekong 24 CB Nigeria 17/0
    Developed at the Tottenam Youth system, ended up going with Nigeria.
    Mimoun Mahi 23 Striker Morocco 2/1
    He could have been a decent striker option for the Dutch Team in the future but lost to Morocco.
    Oussama Tannane 23 RW Morocco 8/0
    Sofyan Amrabat 22 Midfield Morocco 2/0
    Bilal Basacikoglu 22 RW Turkey 0/0
    Tyronne Ebuehi 22 RB Nigeria 1/0
    Zakaria El Azzouzi 21 Striker Morocco 0/0
    He had good form when on loan at Sparta and also at Ajax Youth, but now slowly fading away.
    Bilal Ould-Chikh 20 RW Morocco U20
    He is a very interesting case. He was such a talented player when he was super young. Very skillful and strong left foot. Debut at Twente at a very young age. I remembered watching him during group stage of U17 tournament and he totally destroyed that English defender, dribbled passed him more than 10 times during the game. It was nuts. However, after he moved to Benfica, he disappeared, now barely plays for Utrecht. I hear he has work ethics problem?
    Ezra Walian 20 Striker Indonesia 1/0
    Very efficient scorer for Ajax Youth, pretty good from U17 to U19 but faded after that.

    1. Ezra Walian has chosen to represent Indonesia. Now he is back in Holland. He plays for Almere City in Holland.

      In this August, I hope he will play for our national team in the Asian Games event.

    2. Quincy Owusu-Abeyie 31 LW Ghana 18/2
      Reza Ghoochannejhad 30 Striker Iran 39/17
      Aykut Demir 29 CB Turkey 1/0
      Ismail H’Maidat 22 Midfield Morocco 1/0

  22. Lastly, is KNVB still trying to retain Bradley Kuwas 25 RW Hercales? He could be an interesting back up option for the future as well. I know Danny Blind tried to talk to him to wait for his chance for Dutch but not sure if he has enough patience.

  23. The Moroccan connection is unfortunate but not much to be done about it.

    The Moroccan culture is strong, and it is hard for players who actually want to play for Oranje not to decide to play for Morocco. It’s about the fathers, the grandfathers, the family in Morocco etc etc.

    Some players would become outcasts in their own family if they would turn their back to their homeland.

    I don’t have a problem with it.

    Sure, we’d love to have Ziyech, but it wasn’t meant to be.

    The story that Morrocan players (Ayoub) are difficult is wrong. They’re not difficult guys. They’re a bit different culturally.

    Ayoub is actually a funny guy, warm personality and really open. He’s going to Feyenoord next season.

    Same with Ziyech. These kids are highly ambitious and proud. The whole family ‘s pride is linked to these kids, and also their income is shared amongst the extended family.

    They are different like the Spanish are different to us. In Holland, a coach will single out one player in the group for a mistake and have a go at them. Ridicule the player.

    This, you cannot do with a Morrocan or even a Spanish player. You’ll lose them immediately.

    This, one has to understand.

    I know that Gio and Ten Hag and Cocu are very aware of this (as gio is partly Asian and played in Spain, like Cocu, while Ten Hag has worked with so-called “difficult children” and is very good with lost cases).

    Some coaches are too thick for this (Van Gaal?? Koeman??) and might lose players as a result.

    1. I partially agree with you Jan about the strong roots o that the Moroccan players might have, but this not mean tha the KNBV can not make their best effort to convince this players to play for Holland.

      in Ziyech case, I think the KNBV was negligent, because Ziyech chose to play for Holland at the beginning. In fact he was called to play and he got injuried before his debut and left the training and some months later he was choosing Morocco…

      1. True, but this has more to do with Ziyech’s issue with assistant coach Van Basten and the fact that Hiddink once didn’t select him as he was playing as a central striker and Hiddink didn’t need him for this.

        Ziyech’s ego can be huge.

    1. I think in the future Sneijder type of player would be considered old school. If you look at current midfield players, you have to have the ability to do it all. If you look at France, each one of their midfield can intercept the ball and start a counter attack right away. They don’t really have a real AM because everyone can do the job. It can’t be like in the past De Jong intercept the ball and finds Sneijder, Sneijder starts the attack, you waste a pass right there. Now football is played at such a high speed, and I think Eredivisie is missing this. And to answer your question, i heard good things from these two super young talents.
      Ryan Gravenberch 15 Midfield Ajax
      Immanuel Pherai 16 Midfield Dortmund
      Older talents like
      Donny van de Beek 20 Midfield Ajax
      Frenkie de Jong 20 Midfield Ajax
      Tonny Vilhena 23 Midfield Feyenoord
      If we do want 3 midfielders, I actually would really want to see how well these three plays togther.
      right now I would not mind using Promes at the “AM” role, honestly we are missing players in midfield that can win the ball, dribble pass players and start a counter attack right away.I don’t see anyone that can do all three really well consistently.

      1. For example,
        Kevin Strootman 28 Midfield Roma
        Can win the ball, can pass, can’t dribble pass players.
        Georginio Wijnaldum 27 Midfield Liverpool
        Can win the ball, can dribble pass players but not a consistent passer.
        Marco van Ginkel 25 Midfield PSV similar to Strootman but not as good.

        1. To be honest there players who jus never get the attention jus because there are overshadowed by the top 3 team players.A very classic example is that of klaassen. Four F**king years and look at what had happened to can you expect a player of his calibre to thrive at top level. Ajax got the right bargin and chapter closed. Now you look at Tjaronn chery, he was a better player with a better ceiling than klaassen playing for Groningen but yet he never got the opportunity to prove himself. Its unfortune he is playing in China right now but as I said it before, he was the best option for filling sneijders shoes.if danny would given him a chance, defintely he would have proved him wrong on his F**ked face.

          My prediction it will be a attacking midfield which will jus drop back. AZ midfield is the one to look out for though. Some upcoming talents there. Dani de wit of Ajax.

          If make shift then Depay. Pirlo role.

  24. Totally agree with what Jan has said above about the body and mind over raw skills.talent wise they could all be above the threshold but it all comes down to how to take that to the next level. While commenting on his transfer speculation De Ligt said his heart is with Ajax but then he also acknowlegded a player like him needs to keep playing european football and if Ajax doesnt qualify for EL or CL it could affect his development, which is quiet true.well this will be a hurdle for all talents that are listed above, if they jus keep playing at eredivisie level,compared to other talents in other leagues who will thrive better. If you look at players like Kluivert, De Jong, Bergwijn,De Ligt, Van Der Beek, Pierie, Til who have already established themselves practically need new adventure next season to take a step further whether its big or small and then only they will be able to shift somewhat to another level. it could be gamble but again its all about you body and mind and this is where you break it or get broken because eredivisie is no more ladder to reach to the peak like before. Another season in eredivisie and without european football will be detrimental.

    Christopher Ukunku made his full debut for PSG vs Mertz over the weekend. It never looked like it was jus his second appearence for PSG and without cavani and Neymar, he took the centre stage scoring twice in man of match performance. Even though mertz is sitting bottom of the table but still for 20 year old to start in jus his second appearence and deliever a performance like that, jus goes to show it is possible.

    If you look at chong, Redan, Dilrosun,Adekanye, fernandes, dont think they will regret the choices they made.they might end up like Ake but then again they talents will be scouted. You can always point fingers at Malen, Peeters who are back in eredivisie but then again you have to ask you self, were they talented enough

    Another thing I would to say here is that it will be hard for players playing for top three in eredivisie to establish them self if they stay too long in eredivisie.someone else will emerge from the bottom and push you down and so forth and then all of a sudden they will start back paddling instead of taking the next step. Classic examples is Van Rhijn – Tete. Klaassen – van der beek Veltman – De Ligt.this is the current cycle in eredivisie and
    With the trend of more foregin players being scouted by top three teams jus goes to show the depth factor isnt there in dutch players to play at top level. Even in Jong Ajax, no one is ready to step up in the main team. If De Ligt and Kluivert depart, mostly likely it will players outside of eredivisie that will replace them. Ajax is already scouting Van Drongelen who are in relegation zone at also look at feyenoord, they summer signings have simply backfired. I had all the money on them after the transfers to win the title but it hasnt worked out for Gio. I would blame injuries for their lackluster season.

  25. Any coments about van Huffe and Ferdi Kadliogu?

    @Lucas thanks for your answer. I now that today the misfiled need to do all the job, but Sneijder was good, recovering, dribbling and has ana amazing pass. Great vision. What I miss in this orange is the lack of vision… always the same predictable passes …

    I just want to find a player with great vision. I had my hopes in Maher (didn’t work) Ziyech (he chooses marocco) and lately Nouri (no comments here.. it’s very sad what happened to him)

    I don’t know if Frankie De Jong could be this man.. I hope so

    1. Kadioglu has been a regular for NEC Nijmegan even when they were in eredivisie last season . it was sad to see them get relegated as this should have been stepping up season for him. he has also featured extensively for NT at youth levels and no doubt his talents will be scouted very soon.NEC Nijmegan is still leading the Jupiler League and with 10 or so games left, they could well get promotion back to eredivise again.

      sam van huffel is kind of mystery. he hasnt featured much at youth level and neither he has featured for ADO haag first team. he is currently playing Derde Divisie which is fourth tier league. its basically the u 21s for ADO Haag. if only he breaks in the eredivisie for ADO then only it would possible to ascertain potential ceiling. I hope the story has not being exaggerated with that to Man United Scouting. he also is not in the U 19s which was jus recently announced.

  26. We have a good team and already some really hot talents with De Ligt, Kluivert, Frenkie de Jong, Bergwijn, Locadia, Memphis…

    We have quality but we don’t have yet the best players of the world. We therefore must work as a team for the same goal.

    We need new leaders. In the past we had more than enough with Cocu, Frank de Boer, Davids, Stam, Edwin.

    Now I can say we really lack leadership from our players. I believe Van Dijk can be a true leader, also De Vrij, Strootman.

        1. I have my doubts on Malen. Cody Gakpo has stepped up a notch and looks more promising then him. Both have been selected in the U19s squad and will be intresting to see who starts on that left wing. Gakpo has been starting in the last couple of games for Jong PSV and both malen and Gakpo have been training with the first team.

  27. Interesting question,

    My concern is not the team for the upcoming matches but the team we can build for the next WC, in 4 years. That is why I don´t pay too much attention to players like Vormer or Babbel.

    If you have to put your money, Who do you think would be our main striker in 4 years? Daishawn Redan as a kind of new Hasselbaink? PSV´s Lammers?

    I think the wingers could be Depay, Promes, Ter Stegen, Kluivert … chong?

    I have made some bad guesses after Wonlskwinkel, Kishna and later Achnabar…that I won’t like to bed anymore LOL

    1. To be honest I cant see them qualifying from nations league either for European Football. As much as things are starting to fall into places and even if Koeman comes up with a decent starting 11, they will still be out of depth compared to Germany and France.then comes the injury crisis which without the depth in the squad will continue to everytime hinder the progress of the team. if you look
      at France and Germany , they can easily come up with three solid starting 11 and pretty much dont have to worry about injuries. compare that to NT, injuries will always mean starting off the blocks again. this is where I would like see Koeman use at least two sets of players for each position.this was very common under Danny Blind who everytime hit by injury crisis was back paddling.

      Boadu-Redan-Lammers -Zivkovic


      Frenkie-Kadioglu- fernandes-Reis- kongolo-Eiting -De Wit- Koopmeiners

      Pierie-De Ligt-Schuurs-Van Drongelen,Sandler,Hoogma

      Castillo-Mensah- Bakker- Ouwejan- verdonk- Tropuee

      bijlow-drommel- zoet- cillessen

      I would like to see this names in 2022

  28. I keep hearing people see mentioning just we have talent such as de ligt

    I mean , come on we have enough good defenders for the next upcoming ten years . More than enough ! van dijk. , ake , de vrij , hoedt , blind, tete , janmaat etc ( de ligt? Who cares for now he can take his time to develop himself )

    Our biggest problem is our midfield and we do not have any wordclass strikers anymore . No forward whom we can rely on

    Strootman ? Give me a break what has he done ever for Holland ? After his injury he has never beeen back the one who played for Van Gaal before

    I actually really like van ginkel and he played really well during his time for ac Milan. It’s just the unlucky boy never meets a club who gives him the chance ( too bad he didn’t continue to stay in Milan

    Not until we can some new talent faces to replace robben , Sneijder , van person , de Jong , Kuyt, van bommel, huntelaar, van nisterlrooy , there is not much hope with the current players we have

    I thought wijnaldum would have contribute something but I couldn’t see much from his during his last few games for Holland

    Not until we build up a new midfield that could supply the strikers like we did in the past

    I hate to say this but really envy all the talented and powerful players France and Belgium have . And they are all young faces

        1. Manchester United player shows off injury on Instagram
          Daley Blind has not played for Man Utd in nearly two months and has showed off the extent of his injury to supporters on Instagram.

      1. –Kluivert—–Babel—–Promes–

  29. Champions League quarter-final draw

    Barcelona v Roma

    Sevilla v Bayern Munich

    Juventus v Real Madrid

    Liverpool v Manchester City

    4 dutchman. Go pool.

  30. This is why I always Depay should be used as a super sub. He has been decisive for Lyon coming of the bench in big games. Scored the winner vs Marsellie after coming of the bench late in the game. Lyon won 3-2. This is importance of having impact players of the bench.

    1. You dont have to wonder..Koeman had chat wih cocu an Cocu told him that Vanginkel was just back from injury and he doesnt want to him to be injured points coz everyone wnats to imprees NT manger and they would give team 100 % and that makes them vulnerable to injury again..

  31. Is it something to be concerned about that the Eredivisie top scorer after 28 games only has 14 goals? What happened to the days when strikers could score 30+ in there.

    1. the last 30+ scoring striker in Eredivisie was Wilfred Bony. where did he end up now?

      even I rate Pelle (and absolutely Milik) on higher rank than him. Finnbogason was also close to 30 goals, but still hasn’t got really far in Germany.

      there were the young Huntelaar, then Suarez, Mertens…

      of course that wasn’t exactly the absolute parameter to be a top forward, but it absolutely helps.

          1. Dont forget about Jay Roy grot as well. Has finally found his scoring touch at leeds.still young and could be late out of blocks.heerenveen or Viesse could be a good destionation for him if either decide to brink him back to eredivisie.

  32. Thanks God, Croatia scored. It has been physically painful for me to see Russia winning….It felt like a disgrace to entire FOOTBALL.

    1. Honestly, tonight they are not that bad. I like this Brazilian dude (right back?), Samedov and Cheryshev.

      Croatia is underperforming again, unfortunately.

Join the Conversation

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.