Oranje News 3rd Update – TEAM LINE UP

Last time the Big 4 started together was against Hungary pre-World Cup 2010


The Dutch team is preparing on the two upcoming games against Estonia and Andorra. Not really big name opponents but Oranje has shown in the past ( way before Bert van Marwijk to be honest) that small time opponents can be hard to break down.

The results machine that was Bert’s team has made way for a younger and more inconsistent team. Will they be able to break down teams parking the bus.

Whatever happens, old hand Van der Vaart won’t contribute. The prolifically scoring playmaker had to leave the camp with a hamstring injury. Adam Maher (PSV) is his replacement. Just like old hand Sneijder was called in to replace the injured Wijnaldum.

The 93 times capped midfielder appeared to be the first replacement on LVG’s list, before Maher and Van Ginkel.

Rafa van der Vaart was in camp when the news broke and the HSV midfielder immediately called his old Ajax buddy. “He was still in Istanbul but he’ll be in the camp soon enough. He was incredibly happy. He has worked very hard to get fit and didn’t expect this to happen this soon.”

Van Gaal surprised a bit with his action. Only a week ago, he claimed Sneijder was not yet ready. “You need 7 weeks to get fit. He is on the way. In possession, he already has the “oomph”. But without possession, he still needs to improve. But a fit Sneijder is not a question mark but a key player you can’t ignore.”

With Van der Vaart not part of the squad and Maher not impressing too much at PSV, there is a fair chance Sneijder will start in the team.

Sneijd LVG 2

“Sneijder, if you keep eating too much I will send you away again!”

Kevin Strootman is walking with his chest out in the Oranje camp. The Roma midfielder was important in the recent win over Verona and received an applause substitution in the last minute of the game. The former Sparta man was impressive with his positioning play, passing and lungs. The American owners of AS Roma have invested heavily in their new squad, with names like Maicon, Gervinho and Benatia. “It’s great to be with Oranje now. Last week, it seemed I was not able to play against Verona, as I had this ankle issue. We have a good group with Oranje, with some new faces. That is always good. If we beat Estonia and Andorra, we might be the first European nation to qualify. That is nice, but not that important. It’s important to impress and win once we are in Brasil.”

Another player chased by the media in the Oranje camp is Bruno Martins Indi. The Feyenoord defender was supposed to leave for Everton or AC Milan. The strong holder laughs. “I think the media were busy with my transfer. I wasn’t. I didn’t expect anything, as I said earlier: I wanted to stay with Feyenoord. This is where I will have the best development phase. I want to grow as a central defender. I’m not ready yet.”

Van Gaal said on the press conference that he found it very hard to pick a squad this time. “Some players are not in their best form. Still I believe I was able to find the best ones.” Nigel de Jong is not part of that list. “De Jong is on the radar and I can see he is quickly coming back to his usual standards. But Estonia and Andorra are not opponents for De Jong. We won’t need a defensive mid like him in those games.” Heitinga, Mathijsen and Van Ginkel were not selected, as they simply don’t play enough. “Not picking Mathijsen was a big decision. I respect him a lot. I worked with him at AZ and he is a super professional. And important off pitch as well. But I decided to try out the youngsters from PSV.”

Goalies Krul and Stekelenburg are also not ready yet, according to Van Gaal. “We are missing some big name players still, but despite that, we are able to qualify already, as first European nation. We will play France in March, 2014. That is when I will start to work towards a more fixed squad.”

robben cl boek

“I want his hair….”

On his way to the trainings camp for Oranje, Arjen Robben had a little distraction. The presentation of a kid book, based on his career. With as theme: boys dreams and as title “Arjen Robben and the finals of the Champions League.”. Robben didn’t write it, but he is proud as a peacock to be the poster boy for this book, which is a collection of stories by primary school boys and their dreams….


The Dutch newspaper AD (my main source) has executed a poll amongst readers, as most people in Holland are getting nervous about all the different goal keepers being used. And with all due respect: Jeroen Zoet??

5000 people responded and 40% of the voters (of this Rotterdam based newspaper) wanted ex Ajax goalie Stekelenburg as the number one between the sticks. Tim Krul ( a fave amongst Feyenoord fans) snatched the number two spot, with 21% of the votes.

This coming Friday against Estonia, it will most likely be Michel Vorm in goal.


Wesley Sneijder is at peace with his coach. When he came to the press conference zone, he found a lot of media people waiting to interview him. “Ah, so many press people. That is probably because I am a debutant, hahahaha.”

He basically only missed the Portugal game, but was settling in next to Yolanthe on the sofa to watch the upcoming games in Turkey. “Things can change quick in football. And I do realise I have Wijnaldum and Rafa in front of me. But, you know me. Once I’m fit, I do think I am the best player for the spot. I have a couple of months to go still.”

He admitted that Van Gaal was dead right. “I hadn’t played for 5 months at Inter and at Gala, I wanted to show myself. I gave 110% and my body wasn’t able to bring 80%. So it snapped. Van Gaal was right when he told me I wasn’t fit.”

He never ever considered throwing the towel. “Of course not! That is not me. I’m a fighter. I worked all the way through the summer break to regain fitness. And I like Van Gaal’s approach. He is hard and direct, but always honest. I’m like that too. But I don’t need him to motivate me. I am self motivated. I know what the coach wants from me and for that, I do need 100% fitness. I was never scared that the China game was my last. But it it was, I would have finished on a high with that goal, hahaha.”

Van Gaal: “In my system, the number 10 is not a shadow striker, but a midfielder. And my number 10s always worked for the team. Like Jari Litmanen at Ajax in the 90s. Sure, they score, they give assists, but they also work. And when Sneijder reclaims a ball on Friday, against Estonia, the first one he reclaims, I will be cheering alongside the byline. You can see me do it.”

Van Gaal was clear about his choices. “Sneijder for me was the best choice after Wijnaldum had to leave. He has demonstrated to have the quality to play in Oranje, if not the full fitness. I need players to be at a certain level, for Oranje. There are some question marks, some players who can but who don’t play and than there are the ones that can. Like Sneijder. He is highly motivated. Fitness is a criterion, but only when I have options. If I don’t have options, I prefer a player who can place a ball anywhere he wants, like Sneijder. He demonstrated he can do this.”


Jari Litmanen, master shadow striker of Ajax, Finland, Barca and Liverpool fame, lives in Tallinn, Estonia and couldn’t help himself. Van Gaal invited the Finnish icon to come and spend some time with the Dutch team. Which he did.

Van Gaal was a satisfied coach yesterday. He checked the venue for the Estonia game and said: “The pitch is perfect. Very nice. Twelve years ago, that was a different story. No excuses this time.”



Jari talks. Everyone listens. Even LVG. 

Van Gaal talked about his first away game with Oranje back in the 00s… “We were trailing 83 minutes into the game. We were 2-1 down but won 4-2, eventually. And every game lasts 90 minutes at least. We recently learned this against Portugal and Italy. We could have won those games, but gave it away late.”

Van Gaal gave away nine of the starters. Robben, Van Persie and Lens will lead the line up front. The defence will be Janmaat, BMI, De Vrij and Willems. Michel Vorm is most likely the number one between the sticks. Strootman and Sneijder will most likely start, either with De Guzman or with Schaars as holding mid.

Sneijder LVG Est


Oranje can get very close to the Brazil ticket, winning against Estonia. And if we beat Andorra too (BIG IF) we could join West Germany ’69-’85 in their record of 16 World Cup qualification wins in a row.

But, in typical LVG fashion, he doesn’t want to talk about Andorra.

“We don’t win easily against this Estonia. History shows this. We won at home, 3-0, sure. But they did have the first chance and we needed the second half for the goals. This is not a bad team. We were in good shape in the home game, I am not too confident yet for this one here. We need to be razorsharp and quick in our passing game.”

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    1. This appears in part to be a technicality. EPL teams can only put 17 non-homegrown players on their squad list and Chelsea is at the limit currently. They can use as many U21 players as they want. Still, it is telling that he isn’t on the main list at this point.

    1. Sure, Euro 2016. But he can’t be above Vermeer, Vorm, Krul, Mulder and even Velthuizen.

      He has not been too impressive in Israel or in the PSV games. Really. And his football skills are not great either.

      Once Stekelenburg returns, there can’t be room for Zoet. Yet.

    1. and btw, we started out well and got a 1-0 lead, but knowing it wouldn’t be enough, we couldn’t play the defense-counter game that worked so well against France and Italy in 2008 after getting the 1-0 lead.

  1. >>Last time the Big 4 started together was against Hungary pre-World Cup 2010

    >>The results machine that was Bert’s team

    Have to say words like these -and the 2010 jersey in the photo- bring tears to my eyes. I was waiting 32 years to see Oranje again in the World Cup final. The road to the WK 2010 and the WK itself was two of the happiest years I ever had !!!

  2. Hi, just returned from a mini vacay and now catching up on my Oranje 🙂

    A couple of notes…

    I agree with Sam’s post on the last thread that Pieters should NOT be overlooked. He has been a regular for Stoke and has looked solid.

    Grego Van der Wiel has also been a starter for PSG week in week out this season… That should make for a nice little RB battle between him and Janmaat whom I was never crazy about in truth.

    I am happy Sneijder finally returned, I can catch my breath. That said, does anybody else (including you DRB) look at LVG’s lineups sometimes and think, “Wow, WTF.” His lineup cards read different names almost every match. Who the FCK will be going to Brazil? It’s almost as random as the Champions league draw. Cray cray!

    Mathijsen still plays football? I forgot that name.

    It seems like our Dutch talent pool gets thinner and thinner. Watching our PSVs, Ajaxs, and the like lose the last few years has been heartbreaking! This blog really inspired me to follow the Eredevisie more closely and sadly it only compounds my Oranje misery.

    We need Nigel de Jong back in our team STAT. Sure, it’s nice to have players like Strootman, Schaars, Winaldum to freshen the squad but our youngsters still need direction. Having NGD on our squad always gave me a sense of security. He made others look good (look at Man City these days without him).

    Our issues going forward seem to mirror those that crushed us last summer.

    I am all for the Oranje of Tomorrow and love the likes of Maher, Clasie, and Co. but to think we can do it without vital members of Old Guard is a pipe dream at best.

    Strootman must be pissed. Gone is star player Erik Lamela among others, who he joined to win some titles. May the force be with you Stroot!! (we still love you and think you will do great things for Oranje)…. I hope Man U can entice him to Old Trafford in January.

    We need the stars to align for our Boys in Orange.

    1. I am less negative about van Gaal than Ed and Laurant.

      We already expected him to clash with the old guard. We had that a little bit. It was Sneijder. So far not even a real clash, more media created IMO.

      We expected him to blow his ego out of proportion when he had success. He is quite annoying in his interviews. Luckily he is also ridiculed in Dutch media.

      He seems to have his good old blind spot in place. Robben on the left instead playing him on the right.

      When he was appointed as head coach I posted all his line ups of his first spell. From that we knew he would chance tactics more than van Marwijk.

      In his last interview he claimed we play even without a controller. We switched against Portugal from a system with a 10 to a system with two half players in the second half. Van Gaal is more flexible than van Marwijk.

      And yes we use many different players every time. Part of that has to do with debutantes being phased in, weighted and sometimes judged as not good enough. After Bert we had to refresh things. Here is a list of Dutch coaches and the number of debutantes under their reign (last column):


      Another reason why we see a different first 11 many times is due to being strict to rules. Being fit has been a very central demand by van Gaal and the definition for it has been broadened compared to other coaches. With van Gaal making a transfer means not being fit anymore as players are with their head somewhere else according to to him. Playing time with club is a big issue. Wonder if Afellay would have made it to Euro 2012 under van Gaal.

      I think that with Poland/Ukraine in the back of our mind, and Brazil as destination, we have every reason to be glad van Gaal has made this such a central theme.

      First 10 to 15 minutes we dominated in all games in last Euro. Then, we collapsed. Very weird IMO. No Euro team has ever won the WC in South America, or on the American continent for that matter. We will need every advantage we can get to go deep there. Being fit is a major one.

      If he fails in Brazil people will say that he failed to build automatism. Without it, we have been able to draw against Germany, Italy and Portugal. We are also on our way to become one of the fastest qualified country’s in Europe. I miss the excitement about this with many people. I for one was worried we could get into trouble. Van Basten became second in a group with Romania (a stronger Romania) and then it is possible to get a tough country (France?). I think we should appreciate this almost spotless qualifying session.

      I simply don’t think that his demands or selections are that outrages. When we got to the finals in 2010 many players came back from a top club season personally. With his fitness demands he wants to provoke players in doing everything they can to get in the first 11 of their club and and do good. Bert did not really have this problem in 2010 where everything panned out well. Players just had their top season. Van Gaal has therefore a harder job to do and acts proactive. I like that. That it collides with building automatism is also due to having to manage this other process.


      1. I was very negative initially about Van Gaal. But he has proved that he can do better than his last tenure with the Oranje. Lots of good points in both posts (yours and Bitterballen’s)

        The last four games we played were very consistent even though the 11 were different. Italy/Estonia/Romania/Portugal, in all 4 games we dominated the pace of the game and possession in somewhat varying percentages but still within consistent parameters.

        Estonia/Romania are relatively weak opponents and we broke them down. I think we can repeat that and expect that we can repeat that consistently against all similar caliber opponents. The team performance is relatively stable. That is an improvement with the past before Bert and a relative continuation of Bert’s machine.

        With Italy we dominated for about 60-70 mins and with Portugal for 45 mins. Italy was played when everyone was at his peak fitness and Portugal was played in the summer when fitness was lower. But both these games against top 10 opponents showed similar characteristics. Press up high, possession, running and overall consistency as long as the fitness allowed it.

        I think the game versus Italy is probably an indication of how good we can be. Good but not very good. Perhaps good for a quarterfinal in Brazil but highly unlikely better than that. Of course the draw, the opponent, luck etc can play a major role. We can stop earlier in a bad 16 game or we can go all the way to a semi.

        I think Van Gaal has exceeded expectations and he has built a relatively consistent team with the material that he has. We had 4 important games with consistent performance. But I don’t think the material is first class like it was in 2010.

        And now the game begins 🙂

  3. Alexander Buttner’s agent says the Manchester United left-back does not have the faith of David Moyes – with a move to Besiktas still on.

    The Dutch left-back watched United’s move for Fabio Coentrao fail on deadline day, while Moyes could not agree a deal for Leighton Baines.

    His very public pursuit of a left-back this summer suggests that Buttner is set for a season out of favour.

    He has struggled to feature regularly for the senior side since moving last summer and his agent Alexander Bursac has criticised United’s transfer conduct as well as Moyes.

    Bursac told Voetbal International: “It’s unbelievable that Coentrao was not signed on time. Whether that is an error on the part of Real or United doesn’t matter.

    “We have received assurances of a loan. Alex is not necessarily looking for a guarantee of playing time but he does not want to spend the entire season on the bench.

    “Under Sir Alex Ferguson, Buttner was the up and coming man.

    “He started playing in more games and was trusted in training. That sense of trust is not there now.”

    Besiktas are still hopeful of sealing a loan switch for Buttner and will look to make progress on that this week.

  4. Bert van marwijk biggest mistake was…Fab 4 was fit at the time of final WC2010 and still he didnt start with Fab4.i am sure things would have been different had he started with Vaart.instead he allowed Vaart to come as sub for Dejong.that screwed our diffense.

    1. In worldcup final with 26/27 yearold fit team.he benched Vaart for kuyt that was a horrendous mistake aginst a team like spain.kuyt/elia should have come as sub that time.it reminds me of Benching RVN for kuyt in 2006Wc.
      2008 Ec we sucked coz Robendidnt play and persie got second 45 minutes only.

  5. It has also become clear to me why Nathan Ake stayed with Chelsea this season. He needs one more year to count as a homegrown player. There are advantages attached to that as every club needs a certain amount of them in their first team selection. His A team chances rise as a result of that.

  6. Narsingh and Boetius are coming back, we needed it.

    I hadn’t seen that Heerenveen signed Nwofor, good striker, I wanted him to replace Bony at Vitesse. Heerenveen will be also interesting to watch this year.

  7. From fifa.com: 28 – The number of FIFA World Cup qualifiers that the Netherlands have gone unbeaten, a record-breaking run which has featured 14 wins. The Oranje have not lost a qualifying match for FIFA’s flagship tournament since 1 September 2001, when they suffered a 1-0 reverse to the Republic of Ireland in Dublin.
    Very Impressive stat. Having say that I would trade all the stat and #1 ranking for WC champion. Let’s hope we will continue to have good draw for the WC. Who knows, good draw, some luck, a mix of young players with experienced players who are in top forms (fab 4) expect the unexpected?

  8. The question with Sneijder’s fitness is how well he works off the ball. Everyone knows his talent with the ball, but he’s got to work harder when he doesn’t have it. Also, why is Pieters not on the NT squad now?

  9. I like this guy Castaignos. he seems to be on the right course, maybe he has what it takes to feel RVP and Huntelaar shoes in a few years time. what do guys reckon. I think PSV should start considering in recruiting him . they really need a good central Striker.

  10. Wilson, really? He is absolutely terrible. No pace, no technique, all he does is score these easy goals. I really don’t think he is even close to being of the same caliber as the glorious names you mention.
    By the way is there any link for today’s game highlights?

  11. ———————Stekelenburg——————

    ——Janmaat—–De Vrij—–BMI——Pieters—–



    This will be the starting line up for the WC…just if Nigel plays a bit more attacking football.

    1. Comparison to 2010 team

      RVP 2014 better than 2010
      Robben 2014 better than 2010? (At least he broke his jinx with CL goal and win)

      Strootman > Van Bommel???
      NDJ 2014 > NDJ 2010???
      Sneijder 2014 << Huntelaar? or Kuyt 2010?

      Gio 2010 vs Pieters 2014?
      BMI/DeVrij 2014 vs Matijsen/Heitinga 2010?
      Van der Wiel 2010 vs Janmaat 2014?

      Stekelenburg 2010 vs Stekelenburg 2014?

  12. I wanted to mention that 2 matches that are otherwise less interesting for us have now become quite vital for our aspirations to acquire at least the 7th fifa ranking spot (which will allow us to be seeded at the WC). If Croatia wins against Serbia tonight and Belgium wins against Scotland (on paper this is the most likely event, ie. the favorites winning against the underdogs) then it is most likely that we will not be seeded at the WC (Croatia will have 1 remaining friendly they need to win against KOR, which I think is North Korea).

    No matter what we will do. It already is out of our hands since the draw against Portugal (which is why I made a comment about this at that time as well, somewhat dissapointed and annoyed with that result noticing that statisticly speaking it moved out of our hand/reach). We are now dependent on Scotland and Serbia (or when it comes to that, North Korea, which again I must stress, is a friendly, so even more unlikely to be lost by Croatia).

    Of course since Belgium and Croatia are in the same group, we might get lucky and see 1 of the 2 strand in the play-offs which will open up the backdoor for us for a seeding spot in the WC draw.

  13. well, the fifa website won’t allow me to pre-calculate after the next 2 qualifyers, so perhaps we still have a better chance, but it doesn’t look good now.

  14. ok, I guess I have to be complete in my comment and add tht I didn’t look up (to Colombia and Argentina, also didn’t mention anything about Italy, who I will assume will not lose enough points to be behind us in the FIFA ranking after the next 2 matches), if Colombia loses their next 2 matches (unlikely) then we’ll overtake them and be saved from getting a tougher draw as well.

  15. Miguel, against weaker team I do not mind playing Janmaat and/or Willems/Blind as RB and LB. Against heavyweight (Spain, Germany, Italy, Portugal, Brazil, Argentine) I would use Pieters and Verhaegh as LB and CB. Pieters and Verhaegh are less risk taking than those younger options that we have. I agree that we may start with Nigel and Strootman in the middle, probably playing counter attack football. If we need to attack then perhaps a more offensive mind midfield (Maher or VDV, whoever make it to Brazil) may come in for Nigel. I do not mind Stek in goalie at all.

  16. And there is the interesting meeting between Belgium and Croatia in October, for which I also can’t do the calculations on the Fifa website but I assume it will matter since the draw is in December. Either will lose points and it will most likely be Belgium that has more points when the match starts (so it will be easier to overtake Croatia if Croatia loses ranking points in that match).

    Suffice it to say, we probably can’t afford to lose any points in our remaining matches, not even a draw.

    To get an idea, if no strange things happen in the coming 2 matches (no one losing points from those I’ve talked about), the ranking points will be:

    5. Italy: 1199
    6. Belgium: 1159
    7. Croatia: 1130
    8. Netherlands: 1111
    9. Portugal: 1081

    This is completely ignoring Brazil since that doesn’t matter in this calculation. 8 is not good enough.

  17. Sol, let’s take care of business first. We will win all the qualification games (one game at a time), win some friendlies against some heavyweights (no more dropping points near the end of the game), be seeded, get the easy group/draw,…lift the cup. As Bitterballen hopes, the stars will align next year for NT.

    1. Michel Vorm; Daryl Janmaat, Stefan de Vrij, Bruno Martins Indi, Jetro Willems; Stijn Schaars, Kevin Strootman, Wesley Sneijder; Jeremain Lens, Robin van Persie, Arjen Robben

      2 DM’s with Sneijder in front of them.

      So no JdG (did not play enough), but Schaars.

  18. DRB300 I agree with your assessment of PSV and now Schaars is doing it to Strootman and Wes. Please get rid of him and put de Guzman. And my Lord are our center backs weak! What a childish mistake by De Vrij!

  19. I wish we have a friendly against Argentina. I would like to see how our defense handles Messi and company. That would be good preparation.

    But I guess at this point we need easier competition to rack up FIFA points

  20. Lens never like him in the right, is even useless in the left. Maher for him, De guzman for schaars. Bruma for de vrij. RVP needs to stop play around, he needs to shoot to goal. Sneijder needs to stop shooting to goal and distribute ball more.

  21. Some short half time observations:

    I am a bit of a de Vrij fan, but he is going trough the lower limit in this game. Not just that goal where his usual lack of ruthlessness appears but also on ball he is very sloppy. Would Krul have saved that ball?

    I am not happy with midfield. Stroot and Schaars create not enough magic. Schaars did keep tempo at the start of the game. Sneijder often drops, but was not sharp in front of goal. His corners need to improve as well.

    Lens sucks on the left wing. Bad first touches, bad crosses, bad actions.

    RvP is not making good combinations. I want more from him. Stand up and make a goal.

    Robben is doing well.

    Janmaat is making his forwards run, but needs to stuck in with duels.

    Willems needs to be better on ball, but does defensive funnily enough better.

    I miss BMI’s verticla incisive passes.

    Hope for quick goal in the second half.


  22. Am I watching Oranje? What is this!?
    Just a reminder,Estonia is 85th country in football on FIFA rankings,worth 11 million, which is less than a certain Strootman alone…

  23. What a joke of a team! Seriously I don’t recall a Dutch team so weak since the dark days. No movement, no inspiration, no defense and no goalie. Wow. This is worrisome. Forget the FIFA rankings!

  24. Unfortunately we have lived through those bad days. A team in transition, a weakened league, no new stars. I remember when holland went down and Belgium emerged in the early 80s, well this is a repeat.

  25. no matter how shit kuyt is…atleast he crosses well…and van p can score again….robben is a useless winger…no crosses but atleast he can score on his own…lens is useless..no crosses nor dribbling…why is he a professional footballer beats me!!

  26. Well this is a reflection of the reality. Most of our players especially in defense play for dutch teams that have been eliminated from euro competitions and/or suck in Eredivisie. It would be a fluke to win everything with these guys. Not that I would mind but I don’t think it is possible.As for Kuyt he is the only one who gave a good a cross at least in these minutes in the second half but which RvP fumbled. It should have been a goal.

  27. Terrible game. No fluidity just throwing balls in the box like England’s old days. But we’ve also never been good at coming from behind. LVG is running out of magic.

  28. no one really controlling the midfield. no creativity!
    seems like these guys are playing to avoid contact and injury to get back to club football.

    the Estonian crowd is amazing loud! They are screaming like hell cheering their team

  29. As we all know,defence is bad. And defence is very important in football,some say it is the most important part of the team. With this,we cannot win anything.
    Maybe there are better times to come,new talents,looks like the defence will get better,but as it stands now it is just not good enough.

    1. is this a good time to point out that both goals can be saved by a taller keeper with better positioning?

      I’ve never felt too comfortable with Vorm. Of course de Vrij isn’t very reliable either, it’s Feyenoord after all, you can’t have 3 Feyenoord defenders in the back and not expect to get hurt (seeing Feyenoord’s European results).

      I personally like the following mix:

      Janmaat – Bruma – BMI – Pieters

      which is sort of what vGaal had after his first 2 subs (Willems instead of Pieters). We did not concede a goal after this.

  30. my eyes they sting

    just wow.

    perfect record gone

    Sneijder needs some improving to do

    not enough passing needed, it felt like i was watching an english team mostly just kick it long and hope to win the headers which we didn’t. i’m kind of appalled at the amount of headers we lost.

    i feel schaars and sneijder were mostly to blame, i can’t truly blame lens since he was on the left wing.

    RVP wasn’t involved the way i would have liked him to

  31. Croatia – Serbia is still 1-1. Fifa ranking (WC seeding) projections (disregarding Brazil)

    7. Portugal: 1081
    8. Netherlands: 1058
    9. Croatia: 1051

    Still no good, losing to Portugal, my other big fear that I mentioned after the Portugal draw.

  32. I love…..the referee lol

    Bad bad bad game from the Netherlands! De Vrij was so bad LVG had to take him off, Schaars was invisible just like Sneijder, Lens created ZERO danger, Robben and RVP at least tried but Lens has to look over his shoulders because if he keeps playing like that Kuyt is a better option. Janmaat, BMI were OK, Bruma was good the little he played, Willems was decent but he was too cautios.

    You gotta love Kuyt’s fighting spirit.

    Estonia was far better but I like the fact that we didn’t lose and remain unbeaten which is a good record.

    Many things to think about for LVG. I bet he’ll start with Bruma and Indi next game, Lens on the bench.

  33. Ronaldo is the meantime scores a hattrick. Our RVP was nowhere to be seen. Humiliating performance by Sneijder for the last 30 mins of the game that I saw. We scored 2 goals in 2 and 92nd minutes.

  34. I don’t seem to understand something..WHY THE FUCK didn’t BMI throw out his legs to block the shot for the 2nd goal??? I mean…seriously??? why??? You are a fucking professional defender for GOD’s sake!!
    I’ve noticed this thing with De Vrij as well..couldn’t close his man down quickly enough and literally gifted the first goal..
    Schaars is too slow..not enough handling speed..as simple as that!!! He should never ever start again..
    I hope Depay/Boetius develops as quickly as possible so that we have at least a very good option on the left hand side..Lens is shockingly poor!!!
    Strootman had a decent outing..looked composed on the ball!!
    Sneijder did okay…was trying out too many fancy flicks and touches for my liking..
    RVP was tightly marked and couldn’t do anything..expected a lot from him..The defence still needs to be worked on!!! AND last, but not the least…the buildup play was so so sluggish at times. We should rotate the ball much quicker with precision and that was clearly missing in today’s game..Maybe, it was due to the presence of a static DM (Schaars) in midfield.

  35. Character is another thing… this teams lacks it.
    I do not remember when was the last time this team turned a tough game around and won. I wanted that to happen on Euros,I thought they would come back from a goal behind against Denmark,they were stronger like now, but they were lacking the character,the will to do that,something Kuyt has in this team,and perhaps Robben.
    Against a stronger team it would be even worse to go behind like that.

    1. That was the biggest thing I was looking for as well — how this team, and especially the young guys, would deal with adversity. We got our answer. Not well.

  36. The friendly between Portugal and Brazil now becomes vital for us, a draw would put Portugal at 1046 points. But Brazil has no real motive to win, while Portugal does.

    1. enuf of the fifa ranking bull shit…it will hardly make a difference whether we are in pot 1 or pot 2..if we blame our first round exit to not being in pot 1…then trust me…we wud have been out in the 2nd round had we been in pot 1 ..as simple as that

      1. hey louis van G, if you don’t like it, ignore it, it matters to sol and it matters to me, because being in pot 2 almost guarantee’s a group of death. in my memory i don’t ever remember a team winning the world cup being in the group of death or any tournament for that matter

        1. and with our luck, we’ll probably get France and Brazil/Argentina as our pot 3 and 1 partners respectively.

          So I still have my hopes of avoiding that pot 2 and getting a pot 1 spot. Also note, I don’t think we’ll have any more friendlies before dec. (others suggested that we could get the neccesary points easily with some friendlies, well, you can forget about that, it’s a race with Portugal and Croatia and we’ve only got some qualifiers).

    2. Is seeding based purely on current FIFA standings?
      Anyways, we have been seeded in group of death both during the 2006 and 2010 WC. We can end up with an easier group even if we are pot 2

      1. but that would rely on getting a weak asian team and a weak south american team,

        groups typically are allowed a maximum of 2 european teams, and no double teams from the other confederations

        although i heard they might use a different formula only taking into account the competitive games vs friendlies

        being in pot 2 means argentina, brazil, germany, spain, italy being an opponent.

  37. lets not worry too much guys…am sure van wolfswinkel will bang in a few against andorra and all will be forgotten…lets also nt forget that narsingh and boetius are now both back from injury…and drenthe is having quite a reinassaince at reading

  38. serious question do any of you guys think that 4 out of the 6 “front” players being left footed have anything to do with the result. Because in a way i feel that the play was too heavy to one side over the other

    1. It may, but should we care? We should have beaten them by 3-0 with the best team no matter what. This game only show the real quality of our team. Sadly our league is going down and KNVB does not have any plan to improve the league.

      1. strootman is lefty, so he turns to the left even though on the right side, same for schaars, robben goes in, meaning the only righty on the right side is de vrij and janmaat
        sneijder being ambidextrous but going toward the left side, then you got lens and van persie lefty, means all attacks happen left. It also means that estonia got to defend easier being 4 or 5 defenders against the inverted robben, and meaning all moves had to come from the crowded center.

        it’s my belief we are strongest when we maintain the ball, spread the field wide allowing holes for strootman, janmaat, and other midfielders to run into.

        Defense isn’t strong enough to be making all these stops, replace estonia with another team and this is a humbling 4-0 4-1 game

        although i agree with you, i feel your absolutely right that the eredivisie is going weak although i don’t know if the knvb has a plan or not to improve it.

        1. I agree with you Onzie. It is always like that when Sneijder and Strootman play together, most of the ball went to the left side. I would be happy to analyze with you how it could affect the result if we draw against Spain or Germany.

          Fixing the line up could help us to beat Estonia. But that will not help us in the upcoming WC. I am afraid we are going the same road of the last Euro.

          1. the issue is if the ball is going to only be played on the left side for whatever reason, like how the game vs brazil in the quarterfinals the game was played to the right side, you better have your best players on that side at least. meaning robben would have been on the left.

            the issue with the team was they were narrow and stretched against estonia, instead of stretched wide and short vertically. This was the same exact issue we had at the euros where mathijsen and heitinga would stay back, with van bommel and de jong, while the offensive players would be all up in the front.

            if we are to maximize sneijder if he’s in form and fit, holland would have to play with fast players like narsingh, robben on the wings, with van persie in front. So actually if we were to play spain and germany and say hey we’re just going to counter attack, sneijder would be perfect because one pass could tear a defense apart.

            this game vs estonia just reminded me of the euros, but at the same time, we shouldn’t lie to ourselves and claim this as 4-3-3 attacking dutch football. The world cup will be vastly different than this. Well we would hope that he would go back to the 4-3-3.

            this game was an experiment of an “attacking” 4-2-3-1 and it failed.

  39. Vorm seems like he’s a bit undersized. A taller goalkeeper with a larger wingspan would definitely save those two goals from where vorm was positioned.

    willems is below average

    DeVrij really isn’t ready for a World Cup. Very soft. Lots of hesitation and quick thinking

    BMI isn’t ready either. He needs more experience every week against top competition.

    Schaars – I don’t know what he contributed today

    Sneijder – truly has lost his form. It’s not just stamina or fitness. He needs to gain his confidence. This was a perfect game for him to crawl back into this squad. I hope he does everything he can to improve his current form.
    He is not a lost cause. His level of talent and experience just doesn’t vanish into thin air like that!

  40. A lot of times we hear head coaches being overly cautious ahead of even small matches. Looking back at what LVG said before this one, it is very interesting:

    “We don’t win easily against this Estonia. History shows this. We won at home, 3-0, sure. But they did have the first chance and we needed the second half for the goals. This is not a bad team. We were in good shape in the home game, I am not too confident yet for this one here. We need to be razorsharp and quick in our passing game.”

    That being said, it seems like LVG did not opt for a lineup with our best passers but instead a more defensive one with Stroot and Schaars.

    It will be nice also to have Ola John and Narsingh back for more attacking options.

    1. Ola John is warming a bench in a weak Benfica. I dont know why many people can see him as a solution for dutch squad. Even Emanuelson is better than Ola because, at least, he can play in many positions and can give good crosses to the strikers.

  41. Should we bring back Bert? Could not help it…He is still available… Perhaps LVG use this as a way to bring our players down to earth, and possibly ends NT careers for some players. I’m impressed with Kuyt’s work ethic. We will qualify. Let’s see what this team is made of as LVG prepares them for Andorra. If we lose to Andorra then maybe we do not deserve to go to Brazil. Let’s look at the bright side, we manage a draw in injury time, and we are still in a good position to qualify. The ugly side, well, this is one of the most dreadful performance ever.


    “He is not a lost cause. His level of talent and experience just doesn’t vanish into thin air like that!”

  43. Couldn’t watch the game but it’s not so so dramatic to have a draw in Estonia, they’re not so weak. France did a draw in Georgia etc.

    I’ll try to find the whole game to give my analysis.

  44. Can anyone come up with stats of vorm, it seems we conceded many goals with him than any other GKs no matter who were the defenders. Hope LVG see this, stek-krul-vermeer are better options.
    About the defence, bruma looks better and have more grit than de vrij, willems? but he should have provided more attack and overlap with lens since lens cannot cross from left.

    1. I missed the game, but when I saw Vorm and Willems in the starting XI, I knew we should get worried.

      Why LvG decided to use Vorm over Vermeer is beyond me. Vermeer has kept clean sheets in each of his NT games since LvG took over, whereas Vorm conceded 2 tonight and 1 against Portugal.

      This was Sneijder’s chance to shine, but from reading some of the comments in this thread, it didn’t look he was that impressive. He looked sluggish vs. Estonia last time, and no surprise, that he looked the same way tonight. At this rate, I wouldn’t be surprised if he doesn’t make it onto the WC squad because he has yet to look convincing to me.

      1. The first game of note that Vorm played for us before vGaal’s time is the game we lost 3-2 to Sweden, 2 goals that normally would have been sufficient to get at least a draw.

        Cleansheet against Moldova before that (as if they even came near him).

        3 goals against him/us vs Hungary (5-3) before that (our offensive production saving the day).

        And just to show that I’m not just naming the bad stuff, he had a cleansheet against Hungary the game before that (our offence providing a 2-0 lead at half time would have kept Hungary at bay in that game though, unlike the 2nd game where we went 2-1 behind at some point, remember, doing them in reverse chronological order, so I’m talking about the 5-3 game now again).

        In short, for me, Vorm is not the best bet.

      2. I have to thank Vorm for exposing de Vrij though (in vGaal’s eyes because I saw the sub), cause I’ve already seen him as the biggest weakness after Blind in our defence since vGaal took over and started using them.

        Little worried that Blind still got away from this kind of exposure now though. Both Pieters and Willems are so much better (both offensively as defensively, even Pieters’ offence is better, Pieters just seems a bit more general allround better than the other 2, and you’ll at least have 1 player that regularly plays against top strikers and wingers).

    2. all qualifying matches since vGaal (and I listed them in the way I’ve rated/seen them for the past couple of months):

      Vermeer o goals – 2 matches
      Krul 0 goals – 1 match
      Stekel 2 goals – 3 matches (only cleansheet against Andorra)
      Vorm 2 goals – 1 match

      The stats funnily enough match up perfectly I just noticed (I’d have to see Stekel actually play to get a new idea about how he fits in).

      Include the friendlies and you’ll get (euhm, I’m not going to count the 2 Asian friendlies, that’s ridiculous in my view):

      Vermeer o goals – 3 matches
      Krul 1 goals – 2 matches
      Stekel 6 goals – 4 matches
      Vorm the same (really, should I count a cleansheet in a friendly against China? I’m not convinced)

      Which is why I put Vermeer in goal some time ago when I posted a rare line-up on this blog (I don’t do that often).

  45. real talk though, lets not get depressed, this isn’t the trend, it’s an outlier, the exception to the rule. maybe if we play bad for a bunch of games there will be time to worry. all the progress we made i can’t imagine it going in shambles because one bad game

  46. Only one draw and you already want to sack LVG?. OK that’s a bit harsh.

    Holland has a lot to improve. Don’t worry guys I believe he has seen the weak spots and will do something to fix them.

    Sneijder was bad but he’s not in top form that’s why he wasn’t called in the first place!.

    De Vrij has just lost his place with tonight’s performance.

    Kuyt has shown YET AGAIN he is valuable to the team even if the whole world is against him. I’d call him as a sub.

    1. Thanks Miguel–
      I’m coming to greatly appreciate your blend if rational thought and optimism. That tends to be the way I look at most of this.

      That said, I’ve never been so glad to have been stuck in meetings and missing a Dutch game. If anyone in my meeting saw me checking for updates, they probably assumed I just found out a relative was dying. I just couldn’t believe what I was seeing.

      One big benefit of LvG over BvM is that we can expect van Gaal to actually make changes rather than to trot out the same plan and hope for a different result. Lets hope for a return to our normal level against Andorra (despite the gloom and doom, this kind of thing is NOT our new ‘normal’)

      1. I agree with your comment re. LvG versus BvM. That said, LvG will need to identify his core starting squad soon (per the interview Jan posted, sounds like he’s targeting March as his target timeframe). I hope, per the other comments here, that he pairs Strootman with a midfielder more able to accelerate the play. I disagree with the prevailing anti-Sneijder sentiment. He definitely looked rusty today with his shooting and corners. But he showed some of his vision and inventiveness today, e.g, the flick into the box that Lens fumbled, the delicate cross that RvP took down on his chest and turned his man to be foiled at the last second by an excellent 2-footed slide. And I like Sneijder’s passion and commitment. I think this game will only cause him to redouble his efforts to get back to 100%, and still see Robben, RvP, and Sneijder as central to the WK2014 team.

        1. Oh, and I also thought that Sneijder was generally in the right spots today, which speaks to some solid off-the-ball movement, which is one of the things I’ve felt has been lacking in his game the last couple of years. I actually a pretty hopeful that barring injury Sneijder is on track to peak right in time for the WK.

          1. Agreed. Sneijder’s not being ready is actually proof of what van Gaal has stated, that players need to be fully in form and playing regularly at their highest level in order to have a spot. If not for the injuries, Sneijder would not yet have made his return and would have had more time to return to form.

            I think that the Sneijder thing is proof to all of the candidates for this team that they need to work their asses off, at their respective clubs, for the next year, in order to claim a roster spot. If the Oranje is still looking like this in the Spring, I’ll start worrying then.

  47. The seeding does not worry me. A good team finds a way to win in either a group of death or a group of fun. The way we’re playing does not guarantee that we pass any kind of group at the moment. We are already qualified but with this group of players this may be the biggest success.

  48. Hope this is not a downtrend to wc14, last time before ec12, we had series of bad performances,losses and we could win anygames, its important from now on to the end of wc14 we are not losing anymore.

  49. I think our dm should be de guzman-NDJ-classie, please LVG no more experimental calls anymore with the like of schaars, and please leave lens in russia, we should focus on boetius, depay and narsingh.

  50. Guys.

    I was at the stadium. The match was incredible, the atmosphere was incredible. My throat is so sore I can barely speak.

    With all my love for the Netherlands team (I’ve been a member of this little community since 2008 if I’m not mistaken, from the old worldcupblog days)… Netherlands were saved only by the referee. I haven’t seen the re-play myself, but several people who were watching it from the TV said it was pathetic, a real last minute gift, all wrapped up for Netherland to save them from losing 3 points.

    The Netherlands fans seemed relieved. They were very quiet otherwise (the whole city was lit up with organge and their singing before the match). The players seemed incredibly tense and nervous after the game.

    As a fan of my home country’s team I’m incredibly happy for the draw, and a bit pissed off that we didn’t get the win that we rightly deserved. As a fan of the Netherlands team I can only ask one thing…


    1. There was a short pull at RVP’s shirt, the the defender let loose and after that the scramble happened, which was not enough for a penalty in itself. I am not sure what the ref used to grant a penalty (did he see the pull?).

      I say, it looked cheap.

      The thing was, there was a another penalty claim from RvP and worked the ref that time. Accumulation effect and it paid of later in the game as we now know.

      Can’t say I felt we deserved the penalty. Felt like it was handed to us.

        1. Yeah there is a case that could be made. RvP was sandwiched and obstructed to reach for the ball.

          IMO the ref gave the penalty for that moment or at least let it play a role to give the second one.

          1. But at the same time, Van Persie went into our goalkeeper, boots first. There are many referees who would’ve given a straight red for that kind of foul. He was lucky to only get a yellow…

          2. We certainly didn’t deserve the draw. Estonia played better. But we missed a few chances and give then first penalty things could be different. Congrats to Estonia.

          3. That was BMI.

            Let’s not mix it together. I think the penalty situation was cheap and the reason why the ref went for it had to do with the first half situation where there was a sandwich. However a ref should not do math. Often though we see a ref point to three situations and then giving a yellow to a player as an indication that he made too many “smaller offenses”. refs just do sum calculations IMO. This penalty was a sum total production.

            The charge from BMI on the keepers hand happened because he dropped the ball. BMI thought he could nick it in, but the keeper caught it first and indeed a collision happened. For me a yellow as it was not aimed to hurt the keeper. Just trying everything in his power to make that goal. I felt red would have been a tad over the top.

      1. The defender not only had his left hand on RvP’s shirt, he also had his right hand on his shoulder. It was a clear-cut foul. He was pulling RvP backward to prevent him from getting to the ball. Classic cynical foul. I don’t think it was cheap at all.

      2. I disagree. Tug at the shirt with the left, then right hand on the shoulder. Not enough for a red (RvP wasn’t necessarily clear through) but plenty for a penalty.

      3. The rule is simple: Put your hand or arm on the shoulder of the opponent and he goes down, it’s a free kick. When you play football and you wanna get away from an opponent who leaves his arm on your back/shoulder, you do lose balance. It’s simple. Penalty was rightfully given.

  51. In an interview after the match our goalie said that he felt absolutely no respect from the Netherlands team, like they probably thought they were going to walk over us eazy-peazy. Could this be again the reason for Netherland’s lost points: cocky attitude?

    (He said the only one who was cool was Dirk Kuyt :D)

    1. I think it was the time wasting of the goalie that made Dutch players angry. He took so much time with every kick to move the game on.

      I understand it, he took the yellow card for it, but he should not expect players to like it. In fact many got pissed about it. there was also a little confrontation between goal keeper and BMI and RvP as a captain jumped in.

      RvP on Dutch TV was actually very respectful, talking about how good the opponent was and phrasing the goal scorer for his wonderful finishing.

        1. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f21CFbJYZWw

          Here we see Gerrard calling RvP a w*nker and a f*cking pr*ck. Last week Liverpool worked him to get him send off. RvP is constantly attacked. Most hypocritical one was Williams (Swansea) kicking the ball as hard as he could on the back of the head of RvP last year (so called unintentional). RvP definitely has a bit of a mean streak in him, but you also have to understand the climate and arena he works in. Trash talking or nasty behavior to unsettle the other happens more often than not.

          Also one other point I want to make. He now has been given the captaincy instead of Sneijder and the same happened to him when Fabregas left for Barca. He became captain of Arsenal. If you follow the Dutch NT and some of it’s players, do you remember that “fight” between Tim Krul of Newcastle and and him? That happened as Krul was buying time with his every kick. Also in that game Arsenal was behind as Netherlands in this game. Also the Estonian keeper was buying time. RvP just gets pissed off from that, even when the keeper is Dutch.

          So his behavior might be explained knowing these two things.

          1. The keeper was fired up from the crowd, the rush of the game, the confrontation with Martins Indi (which he brought upon himself by bobbling the ball on the goal line and not finding it until a fraction of a second before BMI’s slide), the penalty, etc. And RvP was fired up from a frustrating game against a surprisingly robust central defence and a keeper who combined strong net play with excessive time wasting, clearly one of RvP’s hot buttons, as DRB notes. Two competitors competing. Combine that with RvP’s apparent classy comments after the game, I see no issue here.

          2. Any player wanting to become top and a pro and win prizes will HAVE to be an egotistical bastard at times. It doesn’t come without that mentality. As a kid, I could see already which players would go far. They’re the bastards, who take the ball, take the penalties, want to be striker, etc etc.

            Nice guys don’t make it far (De Vrij!!!). Cruyff, Van Hanegem, Van Basten, all bastards. Even Bergkamp did something hideous against yugoslavia in 1998 (was it ’98??)….

  52. I think today’s problems came down to Sneijder not being ready, and Robben playing on the right wing. I know he scored a goal, but he took both Lens and Janmaat out of the game. He didn’t cross or connect often with Janmaat, he kept cutting inside (which may have exacerbated Sneijder’s lackluster performance), and he (or LvG) forced Lens to the left where he contributed absolutely nothing.

    At Bayern, I love seeing him play on the right, but Oranje 2014 are not Bayern, nor is it Oranje 2010. I’d like to see him on the left delivering crosses, only occasionally switching wings when the opportunity presents itself.

    All in all, I’m not nearly as worried as I was during our buildup to 2012. Our offense and midfield will get sorted. Our defense… I’m not so sure. Time will tell.

    1. I’d like to see greater fluidity across the front four, period. LvG’s 433 is feeling a bit rigid to me. Robben, Sneijder, and RvP can all finish and provide service. Lens, I’m not so sure of, but we have solid evidence that he can finish in the middle. Give Robben carte blanche to switch sides, with RvP and Lens/whomever’s on the opposite wing reacting as needed to fill the spaces that open up. Combine it with wing defenders who constantly seek opportunities join the attack (which Janmaat did and Willems didn’t do enough to my liking) and a midfielder with vision and the ability to get the ball through midfield quicly, I don’t see a defence on earth that would feel comfortable against us.

      One other note re. Robben on the right — yes, too often he missed Janmaat entering the space he’d just vacated by dribbling inside, but no one’s mentioned here yet the quality of his distribution, especially when he came back for the ball toward the center line. Time and again he played razor-sharp diagonal passes along the ground to just outside the top of the box, switching fields and getting the ball quickly back into the attack. I thought Robben was just plain sharp today.

    2. Swapping Lens and Robben at half time might have worked out better, but Kuyt was a surprisingly good sub, he knew not only just what to do, but he did it right as well (not rushed, accurate, what I would call putting some care in your crosses).

      I do think we might be able to draw a conclusion that Lens on the left isn’t a good option and since we don’t really have a good option for the left other than maybe Kuyt (I really don’t want to start WC-matches with Kuyt on the leftwing, regardless of his performance last night), we’ll probably have to play Robben there.

      On the rightwing Lens is more efficient and when the WC starts we might have options available such as Narsingh or perhaps even Depay (Depay started playing bad in the 1st match against Milan after his mistake, before that he seemed somewhat allright). With Robben suspended vGaal will probably have to call up another winger anyway, so why not give Depay a try (I assume Narsingh is still not an option considering injury/playing time). Maybe getting such a rare opportunity will give Depay some wings, it’s only Andorra (I hope I won’t have to eat those last words).

      Otherwise, I’d go for Elia, he’s got playing time and you’ll know what you’ll get, well at least I will know. And Elia can be used on the left to allow Robben to play where he probably wants to play a little more (I think that’s the main reason vGaal put him on the right yesterday).

      Emanuelsson can play leftwing as well.

  53. Are you all so blind to Van Gaals arrogance? He clearly said we didn’t need de jong against such lowly teams. Van Gaal is an arrogant moron who let’s his ego always get the better of him.
    We need Stekelenberg back marshalling the defence, 2 defensive midfielders that regularly play together and a regular playmaker that everyone learns to understand.
    Van Gaal just thinks its all up to him – van Marwijk is the best trainer we have had in decades – I hope he one day returns as trainer – if he had stayed then this would be a more cohesive Oranje – now its just an in cohesive mess!

    1. Why not have Nigel De Jong and Strootman as defensive midfielders and use 2 offensive fullbacks?

      Van der Wiel is back, he became first option for PSG rightback. Emanuelson can play in leftback, and he is better than Blind or Willems. Even Anita can do both postions and can be a good option in bench.

      If we still wanting to have a more defensive leftback then we need Pieters back.

  54. This kind of team will not survive group phase in world cup, lvg keep changing and trying totally diffetent philosophy than his ancestor, knvb did mistake on appointing him, its discrace to dutch football… What a pitty….what a disappointment, all big nations are far better than us, i hope we can revover in short period, as a start remove lvg nowwww not next week

  55. Here are the options that we have for CB: De Vrij-BMI, Rekik-Bruma, Vlaar-Mathijsen. With Feyenoord out of Europa League, the first pair will only have Eredivisie experiences this year (plus 1/2 of the 3rd pair). The second pair will have Europa League in addition to Eredivisie, and 1/2 of the last pair has EPL experiences. This is the position that I am concerned the most. I’m less concerned with goalie as I believe Stek and Krul will work their ways back into #1 and #2 in no particular order (unless injury), with either Vemeer or Vorm as the 3rd goalie.
    After Andorra game I think LVG should consolidate his team and let them gel, no more experiences/testing.

    1. I have a feeling that Feyenoord’s exit from the EL and PSV’s “failure” to pass Milan and the overall state of the Eredivisie played a major role for the subdued appearance today.

  56. Its a Rule of thumb, when LvG decides RVP as his main striker, he cannot play sneijder, instead should play vaart or maher. Robben become more predictable the longer he stays in the right, why would he switch left right.

  57. Hey guys. I love following this website and reading everyones replies and thoughts. The dutch are my favourite sport team by far. I book work off just to watch their friendly games and qualifiers. After todays loss, which was extremely disappointing, I went on here to read responses to the game. Everyone has great opinions. But a lot of them are negative, which I expect. We have to remember though, these guys don’t play as a full team regularly. It takes time to gel as a full team especially with all the younger players coming up as new members. I still believe this team, whoever van gaal chooses for the cup in brazil has an amazing enough chance to go far. We have to have faith in our favourite national team, even after a performance like today. Look at italy, they tie and they lose to terrible teams, they have trouble against teams they shouldn’t. But they still do decent at championships. All big teams have problems. Spain tied to Georgia and Finland already in these qualifications.. We can’t lose faith, because there are so many players that are up and coming – Bruma, Bmi, Willems, maher, etc etc etc. give them a chance guys. Some of these comments are losing faith just because of this match. It’s one match. In soccer anything happens! I can’t wait to see what happens with the dutch team. Assuming all you people commenting are true die hard dutch fans, we should be proud with our record and we should also be proud of the new prospects coming up to play. The future is bright. This is a changing period.

    That being said, I like a lot of the players being selected. I’ve never really liked lens, vlaar, blind, or schaken. I find lens making mistakes, and his crossing isn’t great. He’s fast, but lacks the skills. Schaken is just brutal. There are better options to choose than these guys. I think emanuelson should play a left back or right back, he’s a smart player.. Vlaar is too slow, makes mistakes. Blind I’m not too sure about. I like Willems a lot, but he makes really dumb mistakes, but he’ll learn from it since hes still very young. Van persie needs to play like he does at Man U. Robben is my favourite dutch player. He needed to attack more today against Estonia. Strootman is up and coming too, I saw him when roma played against toronto fc live, it was one of the best moments in my life seeing a regular dutch player play! I think I’ve written enough as for now, but my World Cup starting line up would be..

    Janmaat- Bruma – BMI – Willems
    Strootman – De Jong
    Robben – Sneijder – narsighn

    With bench players such as emanuelson, vdvaart, maher, de Guzman, wijnaldum, rekik, krul, vorm, huntelaar, de Vrij, affelay(hope he gets back into form from injuries) , van rhijn, VD Weil, clasie.

    Keep the comments coming! I look forward to reading them every day! Thanks everyone

    1. While it would be nice to already have a solid team together that delivers the goods in an impressive manner, it will take some time to get them to gel. That can only happen in Brazil and the week or two they’ll have before that. At that time there should be no further distractions for King Louis to apply his magic.

  58. Holland was lucky yes, but Estonia showed how in today´s game the distance between the super powers in football, the average ones and the weaker sides have reduced considerably. They played with hunger and with their public supporting them very strong.

    I remember in 2001 how Holland was about to lose against them…with Louis Van Gaal as manager and Cocu, Kluivert, Van Nistelrooy, Overmars and many stars in the pitch and in the last 5 or 10 minutes when Oranje was losing in Estonia 2-1 then we scored 3 goals out of nothing.

    Estonia is a bad team with a lot of HUEVOS. Oranje needs more EGGS (HUEVOS-COJONES) if they want to progress far enough in the WC…that´s is the reason why Oranje was very strong in 2010, COJONES were there and quality and luck and many team spirit for sure.

    Van Gaal has done a terrific job guys. Our place in Brazil is almost secure, of course Holland did not play well tonight but we still managed to draw and I am sure things will keep improving. The season has just started and many players are gaining his best rythm…It seems De Vrij, Lens specially are in a bad spell but they will recover. There is plenty of talent to use.

    From now on Van Gaal has to work with a more balanced and fixed team.

    In my mind the best eleven if they are in top form will be something like this:

    1- Stekelenburg (he is the best when in best form, WC finalist)
    2- Janmaat
    3- De Vrij (has to return to his best, if not, Bruma or Vlaar)
    4- Martins Indi
    5- Pieters ( he is the best LB Oranje has had since Gio, his injury did prevent him to play in Euro 2012 and almost for a year but is returning to his best form, only a question of time to return as a starter as LB).
    6- De Jong ( we need a tough dude in central park)
    7- Lens (if he is at his best, if not, hopefully Narsingn can return soon enough and be the player he is)
    8- Strootman
    9- Van Persie
    10- Sneijder (he has to have the season of his life)
    11- Robben

    Krul, Vorm, Van der Wiel, Willems, Blind, Heitinga, Rekik, Afellay, Van Ginkel, Clasie, Fer, Vilhena, De Guzman, Maher, Siem and Luuk de Jong, Wijnaldum, Narsingh, Emmanuelson, Ola John, Van Rijn and many more…all of them are listed as candidates for the World Cup and they know they have to have a superb season to earn his ticket to Brazil. I think this team has a lot of potential but I underline that Van Gaal has to work with a fixed team. Is less than a year for the WC and automatisms have to be build in order to be in best shape for 2014.

    Keep the good mood guys, let´s not panic for a freaking draw!!!

      1. I am not sure whether those 2001 Estonia-NL clips should comfort me or make me worried. On the other hand, we see that a team with even bigger names got in trouble against the same country we did today; on the other hand, it took a team with players of that caliber to dig themselves out and win. And it’s interesting to see that comic defending is part of our tradition, that first 2001 goal in particular.

        That deBoer powershot to open up our scoring makes me wonder who can replicate that kind of outside shooting range on the current Dutch squad. It’s important to have a range shooter to help unlock defenses, but Sneijder’s and Robben’s distance shooting has deteriorated from 3 years ago. Maybe Bruma can continue to develop in this area? It would add to his team value.

      2. the difference of having Ruud van Gol + Kluivert as opposed to vPersie + no one (should be Hunter at the WC, but he was injured last night).

        vPersie got his chance at an earlier equalizer as well (allowing us more time to go for the win like in that game when the 2-2 fell at minute 82).

      3. it’s funny to compare Kluivert’s header with vPersie’s saved header, they’re both quite similar in difficulty (perhaps vPersie’s was even easier to finish).

  59. I agree with Alan that we need to change some of the key elements of the team. LVG thinks the eredivisie is the best league in the world, but unfortunately it is not. He continues to rely on players who cannot even beat Krasnodar who just sold their best players. Let’s face it we have enough talent abroad. I mean please; Schaars when Nigel is available (I would even say Fer who plays every game for Norwich)?? De Vrij when Vlaar does the same for Aston Villa?? Willems when Urby is playing for Milan and even Buttner could step in?? If LVG does not correct this quickly we are in deep trouble. By the way after watching today’s game, I don’t understand why Blind is being so criticized. Willems is terrible. He did absolutely nothing today and kept giving the ball away on stupid clearances when there was no pressure. PLease give me Blind any day.
    I also hope this is a wake up call for the KNVB to do something about the eredivisie. Something has to change. Better marketing, league merger, better players, but please something.

  60. Demi, well said. In addition the current generation (after Sneijder, RVP, Robben…) is not as talented as previous generations. I was hoping LVG can do some magic, and he has proven me wrong by good qualification so far (up to this Estonia game). We may say that one game does not prove much, but it definitely bring my expectation down from my dream of seeing NT winning the WC next year. Perhaps I forgot this game as fast as possible and just look forward to Andorra game. As I said before, I do not mind to lose or having bad game with these young players (defenders) as I hope they learn a lot from moments like this. I’m still sad that Ajax did not sign more Dutch players besides Duarte. I’m upset with Sneijder. He could use this chance to prove that he regain his form, instead he wasted.
    Let’s put this game behind us and look forward to next game.

    1. >In addition the current generation (after Sneijder, RVP, Robben…) is not as talented as previous generations.

      that sums it up for me. Some different coaching could make some difference but at the end would it matter a lot? I have already adjusted my expectations and if the team proves me wrong, I will be super happy about it.

      I just don’t think we will see anytime soon another team that can dominate World Soccer for a while like we did in the 70s and with Bert’s machine :):)

      1. But the ‘current generation’ DOES include Sneijder, RvP, and Robben. You guys are killing me with this stuff. Should we lose to Estonia or even tie them? -no. Do teams with more skill and pedigree lose to lower teams? -all the time, and not just to the Dutch. We have enough established players (World Cup Finalists, CL Winners, EPL winners, etc) and enough young talent (amazing what another full season of professional competition can do to season these guys), that a good coach can combine into a winning machine if he gets the chemistry just right. Can van Gaal do that? I’m not entirely sure. Is it possible? Absolutely.

        Now, we’re not seriously going to suggest bringing back BvM and playing with two DMs, are we now? Come on. Lets have a little bit of patience as well as a reality check. Forming a team takes time and experimentation. The guy who was a dud today could’ve on fire six months from now. The young players we’ve been following wont all be ready for Brazil- bit if some of them take big steps forward in this new season and our ‘old’ guys keep their mojo, this could be a team to compete with any nation.

  61. LVG’s from goal.com: “We played a good first half and created good situations from possession,” Van Gaal told SBS6. “We gave away no chances and made it 1-0 straight away. There seemed to be nothing to worry about. But when they had not even had a chance they made it 1-1, thereby tilting the game. The confidence was gone. We weren’t able to get it back and dared not to build more [attacks]. I’m glad we had the spirit to come back. Fortunately we got a penalty and we were able to get back to 2-2. You can’t be satisfied with that but I have the ambition to go to the World Cup with this group. They are players who want to go through the fire for me.”
    This team is a still very young and inexperienced team. Perhaps it is a good thing that they learn it now.

  62. Still didn’t watch the game and don’t know if I will but I don’t understand how people can be as much surprised here.

    Honestly, does someone here really expect Holland to have something better than quarter final next summer ? I don’t think so.

    What does it change that we finish our group stage with 10 victories, or with some draws and loss…Portugal is struggling, Italy lost some points etc. but it would be 65/35 for them if we have to play against them in a world cup game and I don’t believe it would change in one year.

    Our two best players :
    -Robben who is despite his talent a eternal individual boring player, always ignore the lateral back who is behind him, doesn’t combinate so much etc.
    -Van Persie who won’t score 5 goals during the world cup, we all know it.

    All the rest are average/good playersbut nothing special, we are probably not in the best 10 national team since the last EURO, it’s not a draw in Estonia which should make everyone realizing.

    Brazil, Spain, Germany, Argentina, Italy, Belgium, Portugal are better than us, France and England are more or less in the same situation, and it wouldn’t be so surprising to lose against teams like Uruguay, Colombia, Ivory Coast, Croatia, Russia who have at least as much talent players as us currently.

  63. Haven’t posted here in a long time, but here goes:


    I think we are starting to see a group of players really distinguish themselves for the NT. I feel like this is definitely more of a tryout time for VG and I feel like we will see the fruit in 6 months.


    Who would you consider to be locks to Brazil? Stroot, Persie, Robben, Indi, Janmaat? We have a very fluid squad and the question remains whether team chemistry will work itself out.

    Thoughts on the game:

    I questioned why Vorm would start. First goal was a rushed strike. The only reason it was a goal is because Vorm did not expect it. Let’s be honest, that shoddy goalkeeping. Why don’t we have more experienced goalkeepers? Half of the job of GK is to organize the defense. Our defense looked desperately inexperienced against estonia…. ESTONIA!

    I was encouraged with Robben… seemed that he played within the system better this time around…

    Ultimately, lets see what is going to happen. Little by little, we are seeing the NT come to form and let’s see where we are in 6 months!

  64. As we approach WC14, i’m starting to get a reality check on this team. Oranje just don’t have the kind of players to best utilize RvP. If you want the EPL version of RvP then you need the right supporting cast. With that I think is Oranje’s best chance to win otherwise like most of you have stated, tough to even make it to quarter finals.

  65. No ideas, no creativity, no movement of the ball, no skills, no speed, plus the counter attacks are embarrassing with how slow they are, this team has nothing of attractive to offer, scary, thinking of how bad they are I really get worried about the way they are going to be in the world cup!!!
    No wonder, no big teams from big leagues are not looking to buy dutch players these days, a starter in oranje like lens goes to Ukraine, thats the best deal he gets and even more he is not even a starter there!! a player who we considered as the biggest next thing in Netherlands like strootman gets an offer only from roma which is not a top club! fer and wolf go to a team like norwich, pieters to stoke!!! what is happening?
    added to that, sneijder is nowhere like the one we knew few years ago, robben is not a team player, all he cared about today is cutting inside and shooting, he forgets he is a winger who is supposed to provide service to that poor guy persie in the box, who sometimes we dont hear his name for 20 minutes because he touches the ball only like 5 times a game!!!
    the defense is another story, de vrij, bruno make the most basic mistakes in defense, you always feel that their opponent is getting enough space to shoot from outside!!!
    Not even one positive note from this team!!
    with the erdivisie sinking the way it is doing this year, I see no future for the next decade!
    now all the optimist people on the blog will attack me but thats fine, the picture is clear now!!!
    when u cant create real chances against teams from estonia caliber, dont expect too much in a world cup!!!

    1. Well said Alaa. Without looking at other aspects of the game just taking a peak at our defense players it makes you sad. All these players come from Eredivisie and from teams that suffered a a lot of goals from 3rd hand European teams. This is enough to kinda of guarantee failure. What I worse is that these players have deteriorated badly since the last time we played a qualifier. Perhaps LvG has come to realize not much can be done with this bunch. This of course doesn’t mean he is not an idiot.

  66. Well well ,let me have some cents.I was surprised by wesly only,i expected him to be more fit and i expecetd that he might score too.coz i was watching with gala these days and he gave me some hope.since was not able to match i cannot comment much.From comments over here i understood that there are some problems in our team chemistry.
    Devrij is pretty slow and not that trustworthy in 1 VS 1.so yopu are bound to concede at least one goal against a good fast dribbler.or etc.so why surprised?
    2-As many said here Lenz is out of shape since he went to ukraine.so why surprise?
    3-Vorm has good reflex and he has conceded many goals for Swansea.i have seen chaos in dutch defnse with vorm.so why surprised?
    4.Estonia has caused troubles for many top teams especially on their home ground.so why surprised?
    LVG must kick out inform and unfitplayers and he must go for
    once they are fit LVG mus concentrate on follwoing players and must forget about others,
    Robin vanpersie
    Seim Dejong
    Leroy fer
    Arjen Roben
    Urby Emmanuelson
    Lerin Duarte
    Marco van ginkel
    Kevin strootman
    Nijel Dejong
    Jonathan De guzman
    jordie clasie
    Memphs Deapay.
    Eric Peiters
    Jetro williams
    Bruno martins
    Karim Reikik
    Jefrry bruma
    Daryl Janmaat
    Ricardo Vanrhijn
    Grgory vanderweil
    Ron Vlaar
    Douglas texira
    Marin Stekelnburg
    Tim krul
    Kenneth Vermeer
    Jasper Cillessen
    I would have added Ola and Boetius.i think they are soft and will get butched agsint tougher defense.
    Guys who think Afelllay and Narsingh will do magic are in drean world,they wont do anything better than lenz or Roben so its a false hope.only veterns who can do something is Heitinga and perhaps kuyt(Grit but not in other aspects)

  67. —————Persie—————–
    —————–Seim Dejong——————
    —————–Tim krul———————–
    stand bye
    Johny heitinga
    Vernon Anita
    ola john
    Memphis Depay

  68. I’m all for bringing Heitinga back but he hasn’t played a single minute in the EPL yet this season (after just checking I see he’s played a Championship Cup game, well better than nothing).

  69. Why are people criticizing Van Persie? He played a very good game. Nice link up play, brilliant touch and hold up play aswell.

    He has 11 goals in his last 16 games for Holland. 5 in his last 6. He is in top form for Oranje,

    1. Whoever made this, either tried to hide the pull, or watched the game with a camera from the other side.

      Click this lick, go full screen and stop the video at exactly 0:30.


      That is the pull on the shirt I talked about that destabilized RvP before the scramble. As I said, the scramble was not the problem, it was the pull at the shirt for destabilizing reasons that might have given the ref the idea that it offered an advantage in the follow up. When it turned out to be so he whistled.

      My theory is that this ref went for it, because during half time he probably regretted the other decision. This gave him basically a reason and the defender should not have given one.

      1. Seeing the replay, how can someone think it’s not a foul? I mean, it’s not just the arm and little shirt pull, but the defender completely put’s Robin out of balance with his entire body, look at the legs!

  70. And you all screamed at Bert Van Marwijk.
    Oh how you wailed and whined.
    At least he had a plan.

    Come back, Bert. I always believed in you, even when your players let you down.
    I prefer perfect qualification campaigns and world cup finals to this.

    Special thanks to our fully paid-for referee. Great job there last night, fella. Envelope in the post to ya, my good man. Phew… leave it to the last minute eh?

    So, Estonia parked the bus and hit us on the break.
    We knew this would happen.
    And Van Gaal did what exactly?
    What was the plan? Can anyone please tell me?
    I would like to see his comments from after the game, and I want to know why he didn’t start with Dirk Kuyt – the only lion we actually have.

    Our national side has been in decline for some time. Maybe some of you are waking up to this.
    We have no Bergkamps, no Van Bastens, no Cruyffs anymore.
    Our last world cup final was probably the dying twitch of our national corpse.

    Van Gaal hasn’t really got a clue what he is going to do next Summer, except retire.
    We have no shape, no style, no balance, no cohesion, no tactics and scarily no truly ‘world class’ players.
    Van Marwijk had all these things and it still wasn’t enough.
    The arrogance of Van Gaal will be his downfall, and ours.

    One good game against Italy aside, which was really a demonstration of Italy not even turning up for the first 80 minutes of the match – and when they did we couldn’t get close to them, and they scored at will – there hasn’t been any real consistency or method or tradition in our play.

    I am concerned, but not worried.
    We have enough talent to beat any team on our day. And we actually play better when the opposition comes out to play against us – which Van Marwijk understood (and none of you seemed to).

    It’s less than a year to the World Cup. I want to see some sort of plan evolving now.

  71. I’m sorry, but I think you’re being to hard on Estonia when you say they “parked the bus”. I think Estonia played an extremely open game considering the level of skill between the two teams and Netherlands had a lot more room to attack than with some other similar games that I’ve seen them play against weaker teams.

    I know this sounds a bit weird, but the score could’ve been 3:1. To Estonia. NL’s defense was leaking bad and I don’t know what Vorm was doing.

    1. I agree. All credit to Estonia. After the early barrage, they settled down well on defense, had good shape, and tackled with conviction. They actively sought out opportunities to counter and brought some guys forward when those opportunities arose. I didn’t see any bus-parking — just solid counter-attacking play by a squad with much less pure talent but tons of heart.

    2. @OhYeah. Congrats on a game well read and played. Estonia showed a lot of courage and endless energy. A bunch of unknown players showed that if you believe in each other and are determined to leave your heart on the field no team of superstars can beat you. Not that Holland has that many stars though. Estonia deserved the win and perhaps a 3-1 could have been the just score.

    3. A 3-1 claim indicates we are now counting chances that did not go in. I think the exact chance that is referred to is the Willems to Kuyt pass, that Kuyt dealt badly with and ended in a turnover with a shot on goal where Vorm looked shaky again.

      When counting that chance (though from a tough angle), we have to be honest here and say Netherlands had some chances as well. Sneijder missed several. Including one in the dying minutes. Robben with another. RvP with a header that should be better placed. I personally felt Netherlands was wasteful and should have killed the game in the first 20 minutes.

      As for field play. Half the reason Netherlands could not execute good build up was due to Estonia pressing Netherlands in an impressive way. The result was indeed a stretched Dutch NT. The goals had made the CB’s insecure who as a result of that no longer pushed up or made high level passes. De Vrij probably lost his spot yesterday.

      That’s maybe a more impressive result by Estonia than the scoreline. IMO de Vrij was the best player against Portugal and bar the conceded goal one of the best against Italy. Come to think about it, the CB’s de Vrij and BMI have always done better for country than club until this game….

        1. Thank you.

          I follow the Dutch talents all around the world. Eredivisie, EPL, young, old. Everybody who could advance the general play of the senior team now or in the future. I do not support a club. I see Dutch clubs more as pillars to hold up the roof which would be the Dutch NT in this metaphor 🙂

          I live in the east of the Netherlands.


    1. The first game against Estonia in Amsterdam was not going very well either till Vaart came in for Sneijder…. But Vaart will not last more than 45 mins at a high pace. So, maybe play Vaart and Maher? Either way we are in trouble.

      For sure Sneijder can’t any more … I hope he proves me wrong but …

  72. Seedorf is a must …
    De jong ,strootman ,seedorf .. This should be our midfeild in the WC ..
    Kuyt , persie , Robben upfront.
    Steklenburg in the goalie ,
    Pieters left
    Verhage right
    Indi and de vrij as CB , I think they will do better in this team with de jong and experienced Verhage , and Steklenburg behind them.

      1. So i’m guessing your formation would be

        verhaegh———-de vrij——–bmi———pieters
        ————————nigel de jong————–
        kuyt——————–van persie————robben

        looks good but i don’t know how it would work and i dont think i could trust kuyt

        1. I think Experience is the best weapon in WC. You need to have experienced players if you wanna go far in the WC.
          I think this line up would work great. Persie and seedorf can do wonders for Oranje together. I actually think persie will be better with Seedorf behind him. Seedorf keeps impressing in Brazil and in great form atm.
          LVG has been always a fan of seedorf.
          Great starting eleven , narsingh depay maher clasie etc can be great subs , go to WC , learn from lads like Robben persie seedorf , help in some games ..
          We don’t have to sacrifice a WC to build a new team.

  73. For those of you think that Van Persie is never great for Oranje, you might want to check the all-time leading scorers for the Dutch N.T. RvP just eclipsed Ruud Van Goal, and is now four goals away to take the top spot from Paddy Kluivert. Opinions are subjective, but numbers don’t lie!!

    1. Why you take numbers that you like to see ?

      Goals in competition games (World cup + Euro)

      Van Persie = 5 goals in 17 games

      Van Nistelrooy = 7 goals in 11 games

      Kluivert = 8 goals in 12 games

      Bergkamp = 10 goals in 20 games (I don’t count the Euro 2000 where he didn’t score cause he was not really playing striker).

      Van Persie got the lowest rate, even not one goal every three games. I don’t really blame him though, he has never been a pure striker, he plays there cause we simply don’t have better.

      1. I am surprised you didn’t mention John Bosman. He scored 15 goals in 14 caps in the Euro and WC qualification. Wow! That’s more than one goal a game!!

        Here’s the thing… we can all slice and dice the numbers whichever we want. As they say, there’s lie, damn lie, and statistics! Whether it’s right or wrong, at the end of the day, when your job is scoring goals, you are going to be measured by how many goals you score. I am not arguing that RvP is the best striker Oranje has ever seen (it’d be silly to do so!). But it’s worth to note that the myth that Van Persie does not show up for Oranje is unjustified because the fact remains: he climbs up steadily in the Oranje scoring leader column.

  74. ———————-Stekelenburg——————-




    I’d like this line up taking into consideration some players are not in their top form or injured.

    Sneijder, Lens, De Vrij are not in top form. Blind injured.

  75. Wolfswinkel is a player I’d like to see more. Everywhere he goes he scores goals. Maybe playing RVP as creative player and usin Huntelaar or Wolfswinkel as our center forwards. Also I believe RVP’d benefit as he could shoot more often from long distance.

    Maybe it’s a crazy idea.

    1. He scores everywhere. Scored against VVV Venlo, Volendam etc. in Holland, against Rio Ave, Funchal etc. in Portugal and also against Zurich in Europa leaue.

      Now he will probably do against Crystal Palace and Hull City in England.

      Crap player like Huntelaar seriously, watch him playing, every time he has to track back out of the box he is losing balls, he isn’t even able to stand on his feet, no balance, no ball protection, no skill quality.

      It’s not serious to select him

  76. maybe with this level of mediocre players, a 4-4-2 formation would be much more better!!
    take a look at yesterday, our left winger was lost, i dont remember lens touching any important balls yesterday! and with this slow motion midfield we have with schaars and sneijder, I think maybe an extra midfielder who can play some creative balls like maher would have been better, this way u increase the number of players who know how to dribble past an opponent and who are able to hold the ball and push their teammate up! so maybe yesterday a formation like this wouldve been better!


    and this way you give robben freedom to play more around van persie and maybe get more involved with one twos with him, instead of always being predicatble by cutting inside from the right and shooting!

    1. Lots of coaches do that, they play 4-4-2 when they have mediocrity in the roster. Which in itself aligns with what many on this board are observing.

      It is an option but then again how further would you go when you indirectly agree that we have mediocre players?

      I would concur with your suggestion but I would nix sneijder. I would probably play Vaart and 3 athletes (Stroot and deGuzman are good, we need one more) and give Vaart a few openings to do a magic pass/shot etc and perhaps try to steal the game…

      But LVG will never do that.

      Lots of folks here say get rid of DeVrij/BMI and replace them with Rekik/Bruma. And of course the CBs of a team that failed to advance in EL should be nixed. But how better are the replacements really? If DeVrij/BMI are 5 in a scale of 1-10 where Rekik/Bruma stand? 6? 6.5? Where are we going with 5s, 6s and maybe 7s…Right … nowhere …

  77. I just don’t see how we can show up to the WC with 3 of our 4 defenders playing on a team that perennially fails to even qualify for the Europa League.

    Van der Wiel is getting playing time finally. Bruma and Rekik have been quite solid so far (time will tell if they are a realistic option), and Pieters plays weekly in a league that is much stronger than the Eredivisie.

  78. I don’t know why everyone rates Vermeer so highly. He is basically the Dutch Andreas Issakson. Great reflexes but he makes the WORST decisions in games and has a very impressive portfolio of howlers that lose games.

  79. Looks like GvW is giving up too many chances at PSG. He’s been on the bench or out of the lineup the last two games. They gave up fewer goals with him out of the lineup.

  80. Switching formation is not an answer at this time. Testing new players is enough, now we switch formation? Let’s stick to 4-3-3. We need time to gel. I’m a fan of Sneijder, but for the better of Oranje, I think it is time to drop him. I will go with Maher/VDV/Wijnaldum. Not sure about Seedorf but I’m not a fan of him. For CB, we have Rekik-Bruma, De Vrij-BMI, Vlaar-Mathijsen and perhaps Heitinga. Unfortunately we do not have good CB since Staam, FDB. Heitinga and Mathijsen did a decent job in 2010. They were not great, but good enough (not making many critical mistakes). Unless LVG gamble by putting a midfield back to CB like Michels used Haan or Rijkaard. I still remembered how great Rijkaard’s tackles. It is not just CB, we are weak at LB, RB, midfields as well. The only world class players we have are the 2 up front, RVP and Robben. Perhaps it is time LVG to build the team around these 2 (better services to them somehow) and after Andorra, finalizing the team and let them gel.

  81. Bert van marwijk was a lucky coach he had 4 extremaly prolific scorers at their prime age.ie 2008-2012.he missed Wc by putting Vaart out of starting eleven.LVG reminds me of Vanbasten of 2006WC.i still dont understand why 2006 team failed?they had everything experience Bommel,cocu,Gio,Ruud,Ooiger,joris etc and young bombs Vaart,Wesly,Persie and Roben.

  82. Bert van marwijk was a lucky coach he had 4 extremaly prolific scorers at their prime age(fab4).ie 2008-2012.he missed Wc by putting Vaart out of starting eleven.LVG reminds me of Vanbasten of 2006WC.i still dont understand why 2006 team failed?they had everything experience Bommel,cocu,Gio,Ruud,Ooiger,joris etc and young bombs Vaart,Wesly,Persie and Roben.

    1. Incorrect.

      Bert Van Marwijk was an intelligent coach.

      We fell apart when the players forgot to carry out his plan.

      You don’t understand why the 2006 team failed? Really? Try watching those games again. It’s pretty obvious.

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