Netherlands humble France in Nations League
Posted: 16 November 2018 Time: 09:36 pm
Netherlands continued their impressive form under Ronald Koeman with a 2-0 victory over France in the UEFA Nations League.
A bright start for the Dutch set them on their way, with the first chance falling to Steven Bergwijn after a cross from Memphis Depay but Hugo Lloris kept it out with a punch.
Missing a few key players, France held off in the opening exchanges but broke dangerously on the counterattack that saw Antoine Griezmann at the end of a header.
In keeping an attack alive, Ryan Babel used his aerial prowess well to lay into the path of Memphis to have a first-time go at goal but in the end shot straight at Lloris.
A short-corner resulted in a goal-line clearance from the Dutch after Steven Nzonzi opted to squeeze in at the near post moments from the halftime interval.
The Netherlands made them pay as Giorgi Wijnaldum latched home a rebound after Lloris kept out Babel’s low volley following indecisive defensive displays from the visitors on 43 minutes.
At the resumption, it was the same starting elevens that did duty in the first spell coming out of the tunnel with no alterations in any sphere shape or form.
With gaps appearing for Holland, Denzil Dumfries almost made it two after connecting with a Daley Blind cross to get his header on target, but Lloris fist away and did the same with follow-up.
Trailing and needing a way back, Les Blues introduced a double change after the midway stage with Moussa Sissoko and Ousmane Dembele entering the party.
Lloris proved powerful once again, as he got down well in time to palm away Depay’s free-kick for a corner in the closing stages.
At the other end, Griezmann got space between two defenders and tried to poke home but didn’t get enough on it to trouble Jasper Cillessen.
End to end action, as it opened up at the other scale too with Depay taking his marker down the byline to force another good save from Lloris.
Into added time, Lloris came to Les Blues rescue again with a one-handed heroics to stop Frankie de Jong’s low shot from outside the box.
De Jong was then brought down in the box by Sissoko, prompting Anthony Taylor to award a penalty, which Depay put away rather spectacularly for a 2-0 win.
As a reuslt, Germany have been relegated to league B ahead of their visit to Gelsenkirchen on Monday.