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Dutch delight in win over France

Tom Devlin by Tom Devlin @rfutbol - 0 4,158

Pin Wijnaldum opened the scoring. AFP
Wijnaldum opened the scoring. AFP

Dutch delight in win over France

Tom Devlin by Tom Devlin @rfutbol - 0 4,158

Holland ran out 2-0 winners over France in Rotterdam to blow the race for the Nations League finals wide open.

The World Champions looked off the pace all night, despite starting with a team featuring names such as Kylian Mbappe and Antoine Griezmann, and it could have been worse for it not for Hugo Lloris. 

The Netherlands did have the same illustrious names at their disposal, but they have come on in leaps and bounds under Ronald Koeman since failing to qualify for the World Cup. 

Ryan Babel, Memphis Depay and Steven Bergwijn started in the attacking three, their pace causing plenty of problems on the break. France's quickmen could do no such thing to de Ligt and van Dijk at the back for Holland. 

The home side took a deserved lead at a packed out De Kuip, Gini Wijnaldum tapping home after Lloris parried a shot. Babel was put in on goal following a terrible defensive header. 

They did not let up from there. As the game approached the hour mark, the Dutch had had eight attempts on goal compared to one tame Griezmann effort for France, and they never looked like surrending ther lead. 

As it was, they were able to extend it with the final kick of the game. De Jong - who was outstanding on the night-  went to ground in the box under pressure from Moussa Sissoko and Depay clipped a finish over a helpless Lloris to seal the points. 

It is a result that has serious ramifications. Germany are now relegated from the top tier of the nations league, but they still have to play the Dutch, who can still go top of the group with the right result in Gelsenkirchen. 

Tom Devlin

Tom Devlin

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