It seems Oranje is never able to do things the easy way! We either cruise through a tournament beating big nations only to crash land unexpectedly (1974, 1998, 2021 Euros) against lesser opponents or we find ourselves blocked in a thrilling “play off finals” we end up losing…. Ireland. Belgium. Russia. Sweden…
You will know me to be a positive minded Oranje fan and I like to protect our coaches and players, in particularly if they have had a good record for us all and made us cheer. I find that I can take that really far, at times. Kuyt, Nigel de Jong, Jordy Cruyff, Bogarde, Andre Ooijer, I really like and respect these guys. Now, I clap for Blind, I cheer for Berghuis and I support Koopmeiners.
But…. now the time has come to step up and earn all these credits, all that applause, the fancy cars and paychecks!
Norway is not France, Italy or Spain. Norway with Haaland is a bit like Portugal (with CR7) or Poland (with Lewandowski). Norway without Haaland is a bit like Austria, Ukraine, Ireland and we need to be able to beat them. With or without fans. With or without De Vrij.
There are no more excuses. Not even Van Gaal’s accident, when he crashed with his bike and hurt his hip severely. When he suggested to leave the camp, the players and staff pleaded with him to finish the job, bringing tears to the eyes of the veteran coach. Ah well… we can add that to the mix. Why not.
Van Loen forgets to mark George Grun
I think it’s sad that Bijlow isn’t fit, but Cillesen, Flekken or even Sergio Padt or Marco Bizot should do the job. Even if we concede goals, we simply need to score one more (or the same number actually).
De Vrij won’t be missed: we have De Ligt.
We simply need to show up. Focused. Fit. With courage, forward thrust and using our brain and common sense in the decision making. Playing simple and effective.
Van Gaal will not play around with systems and he will not change too many names on the team sheet.
Spanje with Malta goalie on their side: 12-1
You can expect two holding mids, this time. I wouldn’t be surprised if De Roon is on the bench or even in the team. Him or Wijnaldum next to Frenkie, allowing the Barca man to wander.
I don’t think Blind will be sacrificed. Van Gaal will trust his experience and his pride. The Ajax man wants to redeem himself. Using Malacia in a game like this might be just a tad too much pressure for the energetic youngster.
Bergwijn might start, although Van Gaal could also pick a player like Lang, provided he impresses Van Gaal on the training pitch.
Kluivert sick of it in 2001 v Ireland
Danjuma will start as left winger and Memphis as #9.
Koopmeiners will not get playing time, I don’t think and neither will Gravenberch.
I can even see Blind next to Frenkie and Nathan Ake as left back. It will depend on how Norway is set up and sadly, that is tough to know.
What will they do? They need to win this, so will they start overwhelmingly attacking? Or will they plan for 1 counter while parking two buses?
I know this blog is being read amongst the Oranje players (and staff) and I hope our message to them is clear enough:
It’s ok to F Up every now and then as long as you fix it!
Should Oranje fail to qualify for the World Cup Qatar, I will accept offers for this blog. I don’t think I can go through another World Cup, blogging without Oranje being part of it.
But, Norway is no Brazil or France. I think we’ll win this match 3-0. Memphis, Danjuma and Klaassen…
This is in Dutch, but you can use the subtitle option to let the bots translate…