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EURO competitors: Netherlands

euro contenders: netherlands

EURO pedigree

Final tournaments: 9
EURO best: winners (1988)

The Netherlands may not be one of the most populated countries in Europe, but in previous EURO&#39 they have definitely punched above their weight, winning once and reaching the semi-finals three more times. Interspersed with players from PSV&#39, which won the European Cup, and also including the AC Milan holy trinity of Marco van Basten, Ruud Gullit and Frank Rijkaard&#39, the victorious team of 1988&#39 was a delight to watch.

Key players

Every Netherlands goal on the road to EURO 2020

Every Dutch destination on the way to EURO 2020

Memphis Depay (54 caps, 19 goals)
The Lyon striker was decisive for Oranje with multiple goals and assists. He doesn't always make the obvious choice or choose the easiest option, but there's no doubt that the Dutch attack is much more effective when it's part of it.

Georginio Wijnaldum (62 caps, 15 goals)
Liverpool's midfield powerhouse brings elegance, steel, propulsion and craft to the Dutch engine room. In particular, his almost telepathic understanding with Memphis was a great success for the national side.

Unforgettable EURO goals

Watch Van Basten's 1988 final volley

Watch Van Basten&#39's final volley in 1988&#39

• Adri van Tiggelen&#39's cross-court pass in the EURO '88 final initially seemed too long for Van Basten&#39 to reach. It was one of the most striking results ever seen in a grand finale.

• In the group stage match against world champion Italy in EURO 2008-#39, Giovanni van Bronckhorst saved Andrea Pirlo's corner from the line. Seconds later, the Dutch left-back scrambled the field to design a counterattack target from a textbook converted by Wesley Sneijder.

• Patrick Kluivert&#39's impromptu finish with a Boudewijn Zenden pass scored a hat-trick against Yugoslavia&#39 in form during the 2000 EURO. The 6-1-#39 win confirmed the hosts' status as the tournament's favorites – even if Azzurri goalkeeper Francesco Toldo&#39 had other ideas in the semi-finals.

Highlights: Kluivert's EURO 2000 quarter-final hat-trick

Highlights: Kluivert's EURO 2000 quarter-final hat-trick'i

memorable moments

• At EURO '88'the Dutch fought to bring down a determined Republic of Ireland side and seemed determined to reject the Orange qualifier from Group 2&#39. But with just eight minutes left, Wim Kieft&#39's rebel head took the weirdest jump to dodge Packie' Bonner and Rinus Michels&#39's men were on their merry way.

• Missing a penalty at home in the EURO 2000 semi-final can be considered bad luck. The missing two people can be seen as careless. But missing five?! Toldo broke Dutch hearts twice in regular time and three times in the resulting shots to send Italy-#39 to the final.

• In an excellent open group match against the Czech Republic at EURO 2004, Dutch coach Dick Advocaat replaced winger and constant threat Arjen Robben with Paul Bosvelt after 58 minutes to strengthen the midfield. It didn't work, the Czechs won 3-2, scoring two goals.

EURO 2000 highlights: France 2-3 Netherlands

Highlights of EURO 2000&#39: France 2-3 Netherlands

Statistics

Latest tournament appearances
Chapter 16 : Edwin van der Sar
13: Dennis Bergkamp, Phillip Cocu
12 : Edgar Davids

Most final tournament goals
6 : Patrick Kluivert, Ruud van Nistelrooy
5 : Marco van Basten
4 : Dennis Bergkamp

Killer status : Jordi Cruyff scored more EURO goals (1) than his father Johan&#39 (0).

Do you know?

Watch Van Basten's five EURO 1988 goals

Watch Van Basten&#39's five EURO 1988 goals

• Kieft&#39's accidental goal against Ireland in 1988&#39 was Oranje&#39's first header in the EURO final tournament.

• Kieft's strike was just one of eight hits scored by the Dutch in EURO '88'which were not completed or created by Van Basten.

• The Netherlands in 1971&#39 – although mainly composed of players from current (Ajax) and previous (Feyenoord) European champions – did not qualify for EURO 1972&#39.

UEFA.tv: 1988 Dutch masters

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