Group Elimination B: Wednesday, 13 June 2012 - Kharkiv - Metalist Stadium
The Dutch matched up with Denmark in the opening rounds in what was supposed to be a walk in the park for Netherlands in the group. the Dutch had 28 shots in the game in comparison to Denmark's 8 but they still lost the game 1-0 such is the beauty of football. With an attacking quartet of Sneijder, Robben, Van Persie and Affelay the dutch just didnt get it right and wasted way too many chances. The team probably had too many defensive options in midfield with both Van Bommel and De Jong, surely against a weaker side they would have been better served with the attacking options of Van Der Vaart. Bert Van Warwijk will be under intense pressure as they dutch face into what is more or less a knockout game, the dutch must try to get a win here or they will be going home early. I fancied the dutch to win this tournament from the start for me they must put in a performance and get a result here.
Germany beat Portugal 1-0 in their opening game but the Germans were surprisingly sloppy and gifted the Portugese a couple of great chances at the end of the game. Mezut Ozil and Muller were instrumental in creating Mario Gomes goal but it was a brilliant finish by the Bayern Munich striker who up until that point had looked wasteful and uncapable of producing a finish on the big occasion. Joachim Lowe will be looking for more from Podolski on the left and Gomes up front and will also have concerns about how Portugal got at the back four of Germany in the last fifteen minutes.
Predictions: Netherlands 1-0 over Germany
Honestly, I think this game will be a defensive war. It will be tactical and could verge on vicious, neither side like each other and there is history between the nations going back years. For me I think this game is a coinflip, both have the talent to beat the other but there are enough defensive fraities on both sides to make this an intriguing game. I'm picking the Dutch to get a much needed win because they have to win. This side is as talented as they come and they know they must win or they will more than likely be going home.
Germany can breathe easier thanks to stud striker Mario Gomez who scored 2 early goals to lift the Germans over Netherlands 2-1 in one of the most highly anticipated match.
Netherlands only goal came in the second half when Robin Van Persie scored in the 72 minute mark of the match Van Persie's struggles in front of goal are a big part of the reason why the 2010 World Cup finalists are bottom of their group with zero points.
"Early on we had decent chances but the German goals came out of nowhere," Netherlands coach Bert van Marwijk said. "We defended badly. Our offense and defense did not connect.
"Germany really has an excellent team. It has power, creativity and scoring."
Germany has six points from two wins but is still not sure of advancing from Group B, where three teams could end up with six points. Earlier, Portugal beat Denmark 3-2.
The Netherlands, along with Germany considered one of the favorites but drawn into a tough group, now has lost both of its group games and needs to beat Portugal to have a hope. Germany will need only a draw against Denmark to win the group.
Gomez put Germany ahead in the 24th minute after collecting a pass from Bastian Schweinsteiger at the edge of the penalty area and turning between two Dutch defenders, who were betting on an offside call. But Gregory van der Wiel failed to move forward quickly enough and Gomez had a simple task in slotting past Maarten Stekelenburg.
Stekelenburg made a stunning reflex save to stop Holger Badstuber's header from a free kick cross from Mesut Oezil from point-blank range in the 37th, but one minute later he was beaten again.
Gomez and Schweinsteiger outplayed the Dutch defense with two simple moves. Gomez passed to the ball to Schweinsteiger, who immediately played it into space for Gomez and the striker slotted inside the far post.
Gomez went off in the 72nd minute and was replaced by Miroslav Klose - but one minute later Van Persie finally found the target for the Dutch, driving home from the edge of the box in the 73rd.
The Dutch perked up, then, but even the later insertion of a fourth Dutch striker, Dirk Kuyt, did not produce the equalizer.
"The time just wouldn't pass, it remained standing," said Gomez, who also scored the only goal in Germany's opening 1-0 win over Portugal. "They were pressing. It was close until the end but with Manuel Neuer in goal we can be a bit more relaxed."
EURO 2012: Germany vs Netherlands Timeline
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