What happened to the Class of '88 ?

The Class of ’88 will always be personified by players like Marco van Basten and Ruud Gullit. Rinus Michels made one big change after the first game ( 0-1 against the USSR) and kept his faith in his line up. A number of players in that squad were never used. Players like Wim Koevermans, Wilbert Suvrijn, Joop Hiele and Hendrie Kruzen, for instance.

Sjaak Troost, Feyenoord defender, looks back as we check what happened to the 1988 heroes.

Troost was the tall and quick defender in Johan Cruyff’s champion team of 1983 and a product of the Feyenoord youth development (like players like Mario Been, Stanley Brard and Joop Hiele).

Instead of listening to Gullit or Van Basten (again!!) we will listen to the story of a benchwarmer.

Sjaak Troost: “It was an amazing experience of course, but I wouldn’t say it was the high point of my career. I can’t really feel satisfaction as it was really tough not to play. I couldn’t have that ultimate joy, you know. When we did the canal boat ride I downed half a bottle of champagne so I suddenly did feel as if I scored that Van Basten goal in the finals, haha.”

troost toen

Sjaak in the 1988 jersey

In the months leading up to the tournament, Troost’s chances were good. The right full back had a super year in 1983/84 and made his debut for Oranje in 1987 against Belgium. Half a year later he played his third cap for Oranje on Wembley, against England. “That was my highpoint in Oranje. Playing on holy ground, against Gary Lineker. I played center back. Lineker did score the first goal, but I played a good game. And I remember thinking: this is the highest a player can go. I did play massive venues with Feyenoord, but Wembley…. I couldn’t believe my eyes. The entrance, those two pillars. We had butlers serving tea at half time. And that pitch… The Feyenoord groundsman would shoot you if you’d go on the grass in Rotterdam, but in Wembley it seemed as if the Royal Crown was hidden in it. It was like a carpet, truly. That evening, I played myself into the Oranje squad for the Euros. I walked off the pitch after the game and Michels gave me a pat on the back. That was the biggest compliment you could get, haha.”

Troost had a good relationship with Rinus Michels. “He would invite me at his house. Whenever I called him for a problem or a question, he would say, in that characteristic voice: “Well… I guess you will need to drop in then….”. He gave me jersey number 3. I thought I was a starter in Germany. Rijkaard had had a tough year, walking out of Ajax and moving to Zaragoza. He got number 17. But man, Rijkaard was a better player than me and he did wonderfully. What can I say?”

The 1988 starters are still very positive about the subs. The substitutes kept the starters sharp by training on the edge. But apart from that, there was no dissent. “It was a homogenous group, for sure. Including the material guy. It was just a good bunch. We were not the most skilled players, I think. We did not have players of the calibre of Koeman, Vanenburg or Gullit on the bench. There was a quality gap, other than today with all those youngsters. But I think we were the best players, because of our mentality. What was funny, was that the B-team beat the A-team most of the times at practice. But Michels would never change anything, other than that one time. And whenever the starters had played, they got to take it easy, but Michels would work the B-team like dogs. But still, there was never any complaint.”

“Adrie van Tiggelen was my roommate. A rival, for sure, but a good mate. I had one issue. I couldn’t sleep in the afternoon. Arnold Muhren and Frank Rijkaard, both great lads, could put their heads down for only ten minutes and sleep! Van Tiggelen slept whenever his feet touched the bed. Impressive. I already had my own business back then (Troost is publisher of magazine  Friends in Business) and I would grab the phone, sit on the toilet and call customers, haha. It worked perfectly, as the customers all said “But…aren’t you in trainings camp with Oranje??”. And I would say “Yes, but this is so important for me” and they all said yes, hahaha.”

sjaak nu

Sjaak now

Just before the finals against the USSR, the squad went to a Whitney Houston concert. Marco van Basten and I were smokers but you couldn’t in the hall. So we slipped out via some exit door before the gig and found a room backstage with fruit and ashtrays and what not. So we sat there and smoked, until the doors swung open and Whitney strolled in with her posse. The bodyguards looked savagely at us and sort of pushed us out, hahaha.”

Troost’s fourth international against Bulgaria in De Kuip before the tournament was also his last cap…. “Feyenoord allowed me to come back a bit later that summer, but I didn’t act differently. That is not something you have to try in Rotterdam, hahaha. I never really bothered too much with successes. Or failures for that matter. And I had my string of disappointments. I could write a book about that. Feyenoord had some difficult years after 1988. The football world was good to me. I enjoyed it, but I enjoy myself much more in business. I am probably more happy in that role than as a player. And more healthy too, both important things to me. I could go to Ajax after the Euro. I am sure I would have played more caps as an Ajax player. Ajax won the Europa Cup in 1991… But my Feyenoord feeling didn’t allow me to do it. I could earn twice as much, but I wouldn’t be happy. Everytime I sat as sub on the bench for Feyenoord, I read the squad selection sheet and it said “Sjaak Troost – Feyenoord”… That made me proud. I’m a Feyenoord lad. My Euro jersey is in the Feyenoord museum. That is me, I guess…”



From the back: left to right.

Monne de Wit runs a physiotherapy practice and a fitness center

Gerrit Steenhuizen, material man, died in 2010.

Nol de Ruiter, assistant coach, is still scout for FC Utrecht.

Rinus Michels died in 2005 in Belgium ( 77 years old)

Bert van Lingen, assistant coach, also assisted Dick Advocaat at Oranje, Belgium and Russia. He lives in France.

Guus de Haan, physio, is retired.

Ronald Koeman is currently coach of Feyenoord (third season).

John Bosman is currently assistant coach of Jong Ajax.

Wim Kieft is football analyst on TV for Sport1.

Wilber Suvrijn lives in France and used to be antique dealer and player manager. He is currently dedicating his time to managing his daughter, a huge tennis talent.

Joop Hiele resigned as Feyenoord’s keeper academy manager and focuses on his company in NLP.

Hans van Breukelen is in the Board of Directors of PSV and does motivational workshops, public talks and workshops.

Hendrie Kruzen was assistant coach at Heracles Almelo and moves this summer to Vitesse Arnhem with Peter Bosz

Frank Rijkaard is on a sabbatical after his exit in Saudi Arabia.

Sjaak Troost has a company in Sales Promotions.

Wim Koevermans is national team manager of India

Ruud Gullit coached Chelsea, Newcastle, Young Oranje, Feyenoord, LA Galaxy and Grozny and is currently tv analist.

Marco van Basten was national team manager and is now coach of Heerenveen

Adrie van Tiggelen is coach of amateur top class team RVVH.

Berry van Aerle is scout at PSV.

Jan Wouters is head coach of FC Utrecht

Aron WInter is ambassador of his hometown Lelystad and used to be head coach of Toronto FC

Arnold Muhren was youth coach at Ajax for a long spell and currently does football clinics and presentations.

John van ‘t Schip worked with Van Basten at Oranje and Ajax and coached FC Twente,  Melbourne Heart and Chicas Mexico. He is currently inbetween jobs.

Geral Vanenburg like Suvrijn manages his talented tennis daughter.

Erwin Koeman is head coach of RKC Waalwijk.

The star of the team, Marco van Basten: started the Euros as benchwarmer, after an underwhelming season in Milan (injuries). Marco became the top scorer of the tournament with 5 goals. These would end up being the only ones he’d score at a big tournament. He didn’t score in 1990 and he had a penalty opportunity against Denmark in 1992 which he missed. He did assist Bergkamp in scoring a beauty against Germany and Marco scored an onside goal which was ruled offside.

But, the former EDO, UVV and Elinkwijk amateur became the European Footballer of the Year thrice and once the World Footballer of the Year. He won the golden boot in Holland four times in a row and twice in the Serie A. He won three titles with Ajax, three National Cups and one European Cup II. He won the title in Italy three times and two European Cup Is. He also won the World Cup and the Super Cup. Due to injuries, Marco only played 58 internationals and scored 24 times.

voetballet_vanBasten_Troost_BW_1Football ballet between Van Basten and Troost, smoke partners…

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  1. Always good hearing what players get on to once they retire… Thanks Jan!!

    Also guys created a fantasy premier league for us on the barclays premier league website


    Bleed Oranje classic league code: 355721-91979

    Bleed Oranje head to head league: 355721-92311

  2. Thank you Jan. As Sjaak said “it was a homogenous group for sure”. We need unity and put the team’s interest above individual in order to win.
    For those in Europe, what do you say about watching World Cup 2022 in the winter? I assume it will be tough to drink beer watching beer for once. Vacation planning will be changed. Leagues and Champion League soccer will be affected. For North American, World Cup will compete with other professional sports (NFL, NBA, NHL). Somewhere in that schedule will be Winter 2022 Olympics.
    “Former German football federation president Theo Zwanziger claimed on Wednesday that awarding the 2022 World Cup to Qatar was a “blatant mistake” and that even moving it to avoid searing summer temperatures wouldn’t be ideal.
    Zwanziger told SportBild on Wednesday that a suggestion by FIFA President Sepp Blatter to play the tournament in winter would seriously affect the European leagues and threaten the “unity of German football.”
    He added that German fans would end up watching the World Cup at “public viewing events on ice-skates in minus temperatures.”
    Blatter plans to ask FIFA’s executive committee, of which Zwanziger is a member since June, 2011, to consider the switch – going back on his previous position of insisting on a summer tournament.
    Qatar regularly has temperatures exceeding 40 degrees Celsius (104 degrees Fahrenheit) during summer.
    “If this World Cup is to become a party for the people, you can’t play football in the summer,” Blatter said. “You can cool down the stadiums but you can’t cool down the whole country.”
    Zwanziger said Blatter’s U-turn showed that most of the executive committee had voted “against a fair awarding procedure” in giving the World Cup to Qatar in 2010.” (from tsn.ca)

  3. 2-0 for PSV

    nice game.. and very interesting to see how a young PSV side beat a stong turkish side.

    Rekik, Bakkali, Depay, Wijnaldum, Maher are the real deal.
    Depay will end up being at the same level of robben, maybe even better. the potential of that 19 year old is immense.

    PSV this season is looking good, hungry and rebellious.
    Still, they need a proper Defensive/Ball-winning midfielder with experience alongside Schaars.
    Toivonen and Narsingh look surplus to requirements at this stage and should be sold.

      1. Bakkali is more talented than Narsingh , I think Bakkali will be a starter by the end of the season , but I don’t think that Cocu will let Narsingh go.

    1. > Toivonen and Narsingh look surplus to requirements at this stage and should be sold.

      The championship is a marathon, not a sprint. Jozefzoon is not the real deal and Bakkali will play one game an 8 or even a 9 and another a 4. That is a trademark of young talent. Then it is good to have Narsingh as an option. A fit Narsingh can certainly be of value for PSV and even be better on some days than a good Bakkali.

      I think that Maher suffers from the fading out syndrome vdV used to suffer as well. I sit watching some games with him in it and start wondering where he is (Wijnaldum a bit of the same by the way). Toivonen extending his contract would give PSV a big boost to push for the title. However he has just hired Raiola the Rat and that strongly indicates he wants to make a move to a good club (better than Norwich).

      1. good analysis drb..mohammed u gotta stop getting excited by the present and look at the bigger picture…and bakkali will be back up to depay anyway…i really dont rate toivinen….wud love to see him go..and psv use that money to sign duarte and assaidi

      2. Raiola the Rat LOL 😀

        agreed with your opinion about Maher. when I recall his games on last Euro U-21, the longer he’s on the pitch, his presence slowly faded. most of time though, not always.

  4. I feel sorry that PSV has 9 dutch players out of the staring 11 , meanwhile Ajax only has 4 starting dutch players .
    PSV was fantastic and could have won 4-0. Rekik is a freaking incredible defensive talent. Bruma needs more confidence which will be gained by time.
    Depay and bakkali are just a joy to watch. Willems and arias are great wingbacks. Maher needs more time to adabt his role as CMF ” xavi like ” , but I think he will be great.
    Well done Cocu 🙂 .

    1. I am going to be a bit reserved about Rekik. I was a bit disappointed about his build up quality’s. Though I do agree with you that it refreshing to see a Dutch defender able to defend. Winning headers, checking in front of attackers and anticipating on all kinds of danger. I think Hendrix is better in build up though, but then again that player has the build of a teenage girl.

      So yeah, defensive speaking impressive, build up still a point of attention. Really looking forward for this season to see these PSV talents develop. Rekik certainly being one of them.

      1. Agree with you about the build-up DRB. I may add that his lack of ability to build up is due to developing in England not in Netherlands. But the guy has only 18 years old , can learn a lot frm Cocu this season in terms of building up.

  5. Huntelaar is having one hell of a pre season for Schalke 04

    28 June 2013 Schalke 04 vs Nationalelf 1–0 Huntelaar Goal 18′

    4 July 2013 Schalke 04 vs Villingen 5–0 Huntelaar Goal 7′
    Höger Goal 35′
    Goretzka Goal 62′
    Bastos Goal 79′

    14 July 2013 schalke 04 vs Alemannia 6-1

    Szalai Goal 2′
    Pukki Goal 25′, 32′
    Huntelaar Goal 51′
    Clemens Goal 52′
    Draxler Goal 76′

    24 July 2013 Schalke vs Southampton F.C. 2–0

    Huntelaar Goal 58′
    Matip Goal 69

    A team to look out for in Bundasliga. I hope Van Gaal is also noting this done. looking forward to seeing him against portugal Friendly. Huntelaar will definately prove critcs wrong this season especiall with the WC coming up and I still believe he better than RVP at NT.

    1. Perhaps 442 can be good for both of them. No way to bench a player like RVP bro ! Or to use RVP as winger like he was used with s n Marco.
      Robben persie and huntelaar as the upfront trio.

      Btw , one of the hood news I heard is tht Emanuelson played in the last 10 minutes in Milan game yesterday as a left back and was very good. If he can become a starter LB with AC Milan , he will definitely be a starter in Oranje.

      1. Mohammed to win you need goals, and Hunter is all about goals. if you put both RVP and Hunter together , they will be executing each other rather than scoring goals. EC 2012 Portugal VS Holland.the thing is Hunter has all ways been a backup for RVP and that cycle definitely needs to change. The 2009 and 2010 when they both finished with 31 goals in their respective leagues, still RVP was preferred over hunter for the wc 2010 and look what happened. Huntelaar needs to starts reguarly in the NT so that he fires up to maximum Capacity not coming of the bench when RVP IS SHITTING. Thats whats happening with him at Schalke 04.

        1. I do agree with the Emanuelson story. he is a very verstile player. He can play LB, LDM, LW, and that gives him a huge advantage, it will all depend how frequently he gets playing time at Milan

        2. I know hunter is a great goal scorer , but he is only a box player.
          I think Huntelaar would have been a legend if he existed 10 years earlier 😀 . Unfortunately , today, box players are not as valuable as before.

    1. Yes Andrew. He was a CB aside with Bruma.
      Willems and Santiago Arias as fullbacks.
      I liked Zoet too. He was kinda average in the u21 tournament , but made some brilliant saves yesterday. A great GK in the making.

      1. zoet has more or less seal the 1st choice spot with his performance yesterday…tyton has been close to dismal in his pre season games..so glad…psv cud easily field 11 dutch players all season long …next year

    2. @Andrew,

      Rekik is a left center back. In his short spells to clubs in the Championship and in a City home game he was used as left back, but that is him being played out of position.

  6. Rekik can play both spots. He is a massive talent. Don’t judge him on one game. He has leadership skills too. At his new club PSV, it won’t be too apparent in the beginning, but it will come to the surface. This is where he beats Wijnaldum and even Maher (although Maher might develop it still).

    Robben in the Messi role is something I predicted when I heard Pep signed for Bayern. Pep doesn’t like tall, gomez-like strikers….

      1. He had a goal cleared off the line be a heroic adriano effort. Don’t know how that can be bad. I have a feeling Guardiola will make Robben less left foot dependant.

  7. that lateat goal from locadia, its quiet good for a young striker that perceived by many as goal poacher with less skill. I think its more than a tap in and shown his potential quality as a more complete forward than a goal poacher.

  8. Toivonen, Maher and Wijnaldum have all the same natural positions on the field.

    Thats why I believe Toivonen should be let go. And I don’t think a team better than Norwich will jump to sign him either.
    Toivonen in midfield, in charge of building up an offensive is a recipe for disaster. He’s somewhat slow and doesnt pass the ball that well. He is better used further up front where his goalscoring instincts could be put to good use.

    Playing Maher where he played last night is playing him a bit out of position. He doesnt know how to defend that well, and he’s not a box to box type of player. Maher should play in the midfield playmaker role and stick to attacking/creative duties.
    Thats where Wijnaldum was playing last night.

    1. Toivonen is the typical false playmaker which dutch clubs started to use last years. He is like Siem De Jong and Immers, talking about profile. They’re all more box strikers. I don’t really understand why dutch football, basically having the reputation to be a beautiful football, use currently limited technical players as playmakers or central midfielder. If you look at Ajax, PSV, Feyenoord, they all did the same. Ajax used Eriksen as CM while he is more a playmaker, PSV did it with Afellay and is doing it now with Maher, and Feyenoord is doing it with Vilhena.

      Wijnaldum used as playmaker = 50% of chances to make him invisible. PSV used it soooo many times at that position and they still don’t get it. His positionning and vision aren’t good enough to play therer. He just runs without knowing where to go. He is for me definitly better on a wing.

      Schaars is the box to box, Maher the playmaker, PSV should bring another midfielder, maybe a bit more defensive than Schaars, to have a good triangle. I haven’t see Hiljemark too much since he came, but he seems to be an average player no ?

      1. They need someone like Enoh. Decent defensively, played at high levels, now seems unwanted by Ajax and Fulham don’t look too eager now that they have money to spend. PSV should pounce. Better than to let him go to Besiktas.

  9. —————-Zoet/Tyton——–

  10. Zanka?? u mean Jorgensen? He is a CB at best.
    Why do you think Arias was signed?

    And please enough with the Narsingh business. The dude aint coming back anytime soon.
    According to his last interview, it will only be until sometime in December before he comes back. It’s pretty certain that also means he’s not being taken into consideration for the WC either.
    So yea, enough of Narsingh for the time being.

      1. I think we should all come to an agreement that all players who have been consistently underperforming should be dropped out of the NT.

        Van Der Vaart
        Gregory van de Wiel

        Who else?

          1. @laurent Wc brazil is a frying pan.Vaart is not 90 minute player.so are many.But i garee that they are still class..

          1. Maher is also a player of 20 minutes, VDV still have a bigger influence and activity than him on the field despite of his condition.

            Zidane was 34 when he played his last world cup, he seemed to be tired physically but his technical still made the difference.

            Keeper + CB + OM are the three spots where being “old” isn’t necessarly a problem.

        1. We can add steklenburg , afellay , emanuelson , persie and Huntealaar to the list and we’ll have a fantastic team !

          The reason why we flopped in 2006 was that Van Basten dropped every player who underperformed with Oranje.
          Davids , seedorf , Makaay , hasselbaink and RVN against portugal.
          Simply , experinced players may underperform many times but you’ll probably find them when you need them . That’s why teams like Italy are very hard to beat when it comes to knock-out stage.

  11. @Rami:
    If Narsingh comes back in December he has 5 months to get back on track for the WC. It’s difficult I agree but based on his performances with the NT we should have patience with him as he represents a massive weapon.

  12. @Laurent:

    As far as I am concerned, Maher has not played at any major tournament for Oranje senior. So he still needs to prove worthy of being called up. I hope this clears it up.

    Elia – have failed at all the non-dutch clubs he joined
    Sneijder – has been a shadow of the 2010 Sneijder and there doesn’t seem to be a light at the end of the tunnel. And please, stop claiming he’s been injured… No other player has been injured as much as Robben, RvP and Huntelaar and all 3 always come back with a vengenance.
    Van Der Vaart – can’t accept a secondary role with Oranje and is poised to be the poison in the dressing room.
    Babel – please! Why does anyone still mention his name on this forum?
    Gregory van de Wiel – if you can’t make it to PSG’s starting 11, you shouldn’t be given an opportunity with Oranje.

    1. Talking about playmaker position, why should VDV accept a secondary role ? He almost never had a major role with NT, the only one tournament he played was euro2008 and he did it well. Last tournament, who gave a bit of hope against Portugal with a terrific shot? I do believe VDV is the kind of player who doesn’t lose so much with age, his playing isn’t about activity, energy,it’s about technical, and he’ll be able to keep his technical till 35-36 easily. If he has two workers behind him, he’ll have the ball for sure.

      His last games with NT were good, definitly better than Sneijder ones.

      Who is better than VDV currently for the OM position ? Not Sneijder, not Maher, and not Vilhena.

      1. You keep forgetting RvP can play that role. Robben can play that role too. You are so fixated with names.

        You brought up VDV’s goal against Portugal – great! What else did he do. I have the three games from Euro 2012 recorded and VDV did squat.

        1. Why should RVP or Robben play there ? To use Huntelaar as striker?

          If VDV only scored against Portugal, Huntelaar clearly did nothing, never scored any shit goal in an important moment, should be the first name in your drop out list. There will be no San Marino during the world cup.

  13. @Mohamed and DRB; Belated thank for the info. on Rekik

    @Jan; Belated thank you for a terrific article. In fact, all the pieces on the 1988 team that you have been running have been excellent.

    Re: Dropping players from consideration for the Nat’l team. Sorry, can’t agree that anyone should be taken out of the running a year in advance. Let’s see how they perform over the course of a year.

    1. @Andrew – sure let’s wait and see. Let’s wait for Babel, Elia, Van Der Weil, Sneijder, Afellay and VDV to come back to “form”.

      Laurant brought up Zidane playing till he’s 34 – well Zidane never lost his form. He may have lost a step or two, but he never lost his form. Neither did Pirlo.

  14. @Sam, I get your point. But four of those players—Sneijder, Affelay, VDW and VDV—have played played very effectively (and in the case of Sneijder superbly) at the highest level. Age isn’t a prohibition to any of them. Why wouldn’t you want them under consideration? I mean who wouldn’t want Sneijder back if he is on form? Or VDV as a depth player?

    If what you are saying is that you don’t want to consider them in their current form, sure (with the exception of VDV), or if what you are saying is lets stop even talking about these guys until we actually see something that indicates change, that is valid as well. But if you are saying, its time to move in a different direction, and lets remove them from any consideration, no matter how they perform this season, sorry can’t agree.

    But opinions are what this board is for. Cheers,

    1. @Andrew – we absolutely agree, in the case of Sneijder. He’s been out of form for 2 years. He was frozen by Inter and was subbed in every game at Galatasaray!! That’s Galatasaray!!!!! Don’t get me wrong, they are a good team but them making it to quarter finals in UCL is a bit lucky.

      VDW can’t make it to starting XI with PSG. Why does anyone think he’s Oranje material?

      VDV was kicked out of Real Madrid, fine. He went to Tottenham – had brilliant 6 months and then went into obscurity. He’s now at Hamburg….. a team destroyed by a double digit score when they played Bayern. Saying that he still has a good technical pass is a load of crap. I bet Zineddine Zidance can still pass the ball well, you wouldn’t want Zizo on your team, would you?

      Speaking about Huntelaar – the guy never got his chance to shine on the highest level with Oranje. He was always second choice after RvP in big games. But one thing is for sure, he’s a consistent goal scorer. He had a dry spell at Milan but he more than made up for it with Schalke. He was top scorer in Bunesliga and he had tough competitors like Mario Gomez and Lewandowski.

      Afellay has been hurt for a long time. His move to Barcelona was a big mistake.

  15. I remember Pirlo losing his form for 1 or 2 seasons and that’s why Milan sold him…the worst thing they could do but Sneijder has had a rough time but I am sure he will recover his form.

    He was injured and with a new club and even in those circumstances he managed to score a great goal against Madrid and now in this preseason he has scored 2 beauties, it seems as though his pride was hurt when LVG took away his captaincy.


  16. Utrecht has finally scored against the Luxembourg outfit, after falling behind again. They are still in the hole on away goals however. Almost a full half to go, so let’s hope they make it happen.

  17. Well this is not a good omen at all for the season in European competitions. If Utrecht could not defeat the number 4 from Luxemburg over 2 games, we are in real deep trouble. What a fiasco!

    1. I’m speechless. No disrepect to the Luxies, but I just can’t get over the fact that Utrecht leaked 5 goals over two games against that level of competition. It’s embarrassing. I didn’t watch the game (only the scoreline) but Utrecht’s defense sounds like it’s just a shambles.

    2. Yes Jeff. It’s scary.
      Btw , feyenoord also was beaten yesterday by kievo verona 1-0. Luca toni scored a goal thanks to a mistake of De vrij.
      Kievo verona is 15th on calccio and this fact says a lot 😕 .

      I hope Ajax and PSV shine this year. Both have pretty good teams and coaches. Ajax is more experienced but PSV is more talented.

  18. van Ginkle was subbed after time 60th minute. Chelesa vs Indonesia XI. was not bad. passes and acuracy were awsome. getting and better and better, jus needs more and more playing time.

  19. Mohamed, I agree with you about the dutch clubs and the hope that PSV and Ajax will do well but disagree as you can imagine about which team has more talent. In Eriksen and Fischer, Ajax has 2 of the most talented players certainly in Holland. I don’t see PSV even close to that. But maybe they will prove me wrong. My only regret is that neither Eriksen or Fischer are Dutch!!

    1. I think Oranje needs Eriksen badly 🙂 , fischer is a great talent but I still think Depay is better.
      The best scenario I had in mind is to watch them both in quarter final in CL.

  20. To those who say box –to box strikers are not effective. Perfect example his Fred . ln the confederation Cup he was always in the box at right time and in the right place . He is not a world class striker, but yet he scored goals when it mattered the most. If we look at Patrick Kluivert , he was also a typical box –box striker and scored all crucial goals especially the one in WC 2008 semi-final against Brazil . The Point I’m trying to raise is the importance of goal at crucial times and in the worst case scenarios it’s the box – to – box strikers who always scores crucial goals. The thing with RVP he always hides in the shadow of Sneidjer and Robben and that why he is not able to score goal in the NT. I will give a perfect example, lets say if both Huntelaar and RVP swap each other at Schalke and Man United respectively. Im dam sure Huntelaar will still achieve what he doing at Schalke right now but RVP will go in the opposite direction. It is clear if Sneijder and robben are playing than RVP will no way be able to score goals jus because both Sneijder and robben individual technicians . My Second example,The NT has already played 3 friendly with Belgium, Germany and Italy. 1 loss and 2 draw. Huntelaar only played against Belgium , he scored , but unfortunately they lost too. Against Germany and Italy RVP started. but to no avail.. It has already already happened in WC 2010 and EC 2012. I hope this culture changes in WC 2014. Jus let huntelaar start few NT GAMES , HE WILL SHUT EVERY BODYS MOUTH UP.
    To those who are saying that the senior players such Sneidjer, Van der Vart , afellay should be dropped, I would suggest ,that IT would be suicidal . Definitely the heat will take its toll on the ageing players but crunch time matches, knockout stages, experience carries a added weight on the outcome of the game. It obvious that most of the seniors players will definitely be in form come around the WC 2014, If not injured, so I guess you can’t count them out.
    The best thing for NT would to go to brazil or have a camp some where in Australia, one month before the WC and condition themselves to heat.

    1. @Wilson agree on many points about cruicial goals.What was hunter doing against portugal?2012?.
      We all know Wesly is class and a good scorer too.But i see a goal drought when we play with Persie and Wesly and Roben.this is 50% due to persie’s over eagerness to score goals and Wesly shoot at fist attitude.i have seen many times wesly going for himself rather than making it a sure goal by passing.its weird scenarion in national team.
      Afellay please dont tell me about this guy,what has he done for NT after playing 44 games.He dribbles and and dribbles and end up in vein.He has given enough chances to prove himself in 2012.PLayers like Lenz,Wijnaldum,maher are much more dangerous than him and capable of scoring goals,though they may not have played for barca.
      Vanderavart-Aam fan of vaart and combination of vaart+Persie+Roben is more deadlier than with wesly ,i have seen vaart burrying strong teams by playing team play.he got only one real chances with NT that was2008 and he did well.i do follow HSV often.but guy seems static but when ever he touch ball we can see magic.but thats just not enough in a WC when u face Brazil,Spain,Arjetina,Italy(might be).Portugal and Germany.

    2. You forget that our friend Huntelaar played three friendlies games in 2009 (few months before the WC because RVP got injured) against Australia, Italy, Paraguay, and he scored nothing. Also the friendly against Germany last year, he didn’t score, RVP did during euro.

      I agree about your comparison with Fred (though Fred is a better footballer), but what you don’t see is that Fred gets at least 5 big chances per game with Brazil. Huntelaar don’t get them with NT, first because he is unable to create them alone, second because we hardly are able to create them in “serious” games because of the lack of creativity, and useless possession. How much chances we got against Spain in 2010 ? Two from Robben, and one from Mathijsen on a corner kick, that’s all. Three chances in 117min.

      Huntelaar can be a good finisher if we have a team to create 10 chances per game,but that’s not the case, and that’s why RVP is still usefull with his technical, he is able to keep the ball which helps the team to come a bit higher, and offers better combinations than Huntelaar.

      About RVP spoiling big chances, in 2010 he didn’t get that much, I don’t even remember a game where he really had like 3/4. The game where he really spoiled was against Denmark during Euro2012, maybe Huntelaar would have done better there yeah, but against teams like Italy, Germany, Portugal where we have 2/3 chances in total max, don’t expect Huntelaar to score.

  21. In this following video u cansee that how headless chikens are Williams and Narsingh,though they do have enough skills and speed…lack of intelligence ,Roben was yelling at Narsingh…Turky would have won that game if they had some luck and efficiancy in shooting…
    Narsingh makes things too late and not able to quickthinking a different kind of Afellay..

  22. Van Ginkel is too good to be truth!! ajajaj, watching all his games at preseason he is doing veery well, such good accurates passes, awarennes, stamina!!, he is like Kuyt in that department!!
    I think he will have a good first season with Chelsea and then who knows!!!

  23. norwich city going absolutely mentall with signings….


    The English striker has agreed a three-year deal with a one-year option to join the Canaries for an undisclosed fee after a successful four-season spell in the Scottish top flight

    Norwich have completed the signing of Gary Hooper from Celtic for an undisclosed fee.

    The English striker has agreed a three-year deal with the Canaries, which the club will have the option to extend to a fourth year.

    Hooper scored 31 goals in all competitions last season as Neil Lennon’s side secured the Scottish Premier League title and advanced to the knockout stages of the Champions League.

    3/1 Norwich are 3/1 with bet365 to be relegated
    “There’s been a lot of speculation going back to January and I’m pleased to have finally put pen to paper and joined Norwich,” the forward told the club’s official website.

    “I can’t wait to get down to work, to get training with the lads and working with the coaching staff. I knew Chris Hughton and Colin Calderwood from my youth days at Spurs so it will be great to be back working with them in the Premier League.

    “I have scored goals at every level I have played at and the challenge of playing in the Premier League is really exciting to me.”

    Hooper will have played in every division of English football from the Premier League to the sixth-tier Conference South when he makes his top-flight debut for the Norfolk club.

    He began his career with Tottenham before working his way to a £2.4 million move to Glasgow through spells with Grays, Southend and Scunthorpe.

  24. The Eredivisie has developed into a feeder league in recent years and has taken some big punches again this summer. Not only did the championship lose five of last year’s top seven goalscorers – Bony, Jozy Altidore, Sanharib Malki, Dries Mertens and Jeremain Lens – high-profile names such as Marco van Ginkel, Leroy Fer, Nacer Chadli and national team captain Kevin Strootman all departed Netherlands too.

    The one positive was wonderkid Adam Maher’s decision to reject an overseas transfer in order to continue his development at PSV, but the Eredivisie has no chance of playing a serious role in Europe in 2013-14, epitomised by Utrecht’s embarrassing exit to Luxembourg side Differdange in the second round of Europa League qualifying. This will be another devastating blow for the Dutch coefficient this year as there were 19 better-performing nations in the Champions League and Europa League last season.

  25. Unfortunately I agree with everything you say Srinjoy. Today Twente lost to Aberdeen! I mean Scottish clubs cannot beat teams from the Faroe Islands! This is very bad. It reminds me of the 1980s when Holland sank and Belgium took over. This is happening again. Look at the Belgium clubs, they are getting stronger and Anderlecht is probably better than all of our clubs except for maybe Ajax and PSV.
    All we can hope for is that PSV make the CL and that Ajax get an easy draw. A miracle can always happen!

  26. I think Dutch teams need to start locking good players up into long term deals. I see way too many good players being given three year deals and such. What does that do? That essentially gives you one season with the player before you have to consider selling them to get a good price, or two seasons before you absolutely have to sell them or lose them for free. You have to lock the player up while they’re still happy to play for you. Otherwise when they have a good season, they will suddenly be interested by offers abroad and the Dutch team can no longer extend them because they can’t possibly compete financially.

    1. Good example would be Strootman. Maher also has a 5 year contract. In a way, PSV is doing exactly this. It does demand good judgement as otherwise a you have a problem as a club.

      However I am greatly worried about PSV’s developing links with the Doyen Sports investment fund. The more you deal with these people, the more power you will lose as a club to make your own policy. To keep players coming from this group you basicly have to do what they say. It’s short term gain vs long term loss. Also look at what selling transfer rights of young players has done to Feyenoord and now Sporting. It’s trying to get cash in now, while taking a big risk with your future. Things can turn ugly.

      PSV has sold all table silver (Stroot, Lens, Mertens, Pieters) while also losing players due to quitting or running out on their contract (Hutch, van Bommel, Waterman, Bouma, Nijland) and bought for little money in return. PSV has a fun team, but I am not sure they are up to complete a marathon that is a championship. The reason why they don’t add more depth is I guess that they are preparing to pay back the local government for that loan deal, where the EU is to rule about soon. There is something not right with PSV for otherwise they would not get into a relationship with the Doyen club.

  27. Corriere dello Sport: Norwich still want Juventus striker Fabio Quagliarella, whose team-mate Alessandro Matri is interesting Everton and Liverpool.

  28. Ajax and PSV stand a class apart from the rest of the Eredivisie at the moment.Only Vitesse and Feyenoord might be decent representatives for Holland against European teams

    1. AZ is to follow. They just extended Viergever who first announced that he would leave. He said he’ll stay and work on the leftback position.

      They have a potential, only need a real striker.

      1. we will find out exactly how much potential they have in about an hour…when they face the might of Ajax in the first competitive fixture of the season! lets wait n see shall we??

        predicted line ups anyone?

        1. Ajax: Vermeer, Van Rhijn, Alderweireld, Moisander, Blind; De Jong, Schöne, Eriksen; Krkic, Sigthórsson en Fischer.

          AZ: Esteban, Johansson, Gouweleeuw, Wuytens, Viergever; Gudelj, Henriksen, Elm; Beerens, Johannsson en Gudmundsson.

  29. Thanks so much Abhirup. Poor Ajax overall. I agree with Laurent that AZ will do well this year. They looked good, solid, tough to breakdown and dangerous in counterattacks. They will be top 4 in my opinion.

    1. About counter attacks it’s a bit because of Ajax. I still don’t get why De Boer plays without any DM, theorically his midfield tonight (the one he also used many times last year) is composed by one striker and two OM. Suicidal.

      Ajax got Poulsen, Enoh (hope he’ll stay) and Boccara as DM for the season, they have to work with them and stoping using Schone there.

      1. This is really interesting. I remember De Jong was passing the ball well in Ajax. Then over the years, his passing and ball control become so sloppy. If he regains his techniques, I would take him over any other defensive mid anytime.

  30. Laurent, that is the 4-3-3 system. They all play like that in Holland. I like Schone more than Poulsen who is too defensive for me. I think Ajax was too confident and got tired in the second half. There were at least 2 or 3 scoring chances in the first half that we should have scored. That is what worries me a little, that lack of finishing ability. But Bojan did well and the new kid Andersen is really good. Hopefully Frank will put it together soon because we have to play AZ again in 2 weeks.

    1. That’s a system about ball possession, which logically expose the team to counter attacks. You can use a 4-3-3 with a real DM, or at least players more defensive than Schone. PSV was playing with Bommel-Strootman, Feyenoord with Clasie…Schone alone for the defensive work is suicidal.

  31. That is the line up that won us the league last year. When Schone is in top form he can do the job alone especially if the backs and center backs do their jobs as well. Blind was truly awful today. Most of the danger came from that side.

    1. Agreed, Schone is the best we have right now for DM. Ajax’s DM has to be able to control the play and keep the tempo up. Schone can do that, Poulsen can’t – his on the ball ability is worse than our CBs. Boccara apparently also isn’t picking up the tactical side of the Ajax game which is why he didn’t go with the first team in preseason.

      Also Agree on Blind. Right now Boilesen is breathing down his neck, so if he doesn’t pick up the slack he will very soon find himself on the bench. Personally I’d like to see him have a go at the DM spot.

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