Euro 2024 | The Netherlands and France fail to score in an intense battle, Simons’ goal disallowed

Euro 2024 |  The Netherlands and France fail to score in an intense battle, Simons’ goal disallowed

Koeman was not necessarily forced to change anything. Yet he wanted to disrupt the French game (read: Griezmann) by choosing Jeremie Frimpong on the right. Schouten and Reijnders were the controlling midfielders this time. The national coach indicated to the NOS that he actually wanted to start with the same eleven as on Sunday. In other words, he said somewhat diplomatically: Joey Veerman simply had not played a good game.

But the posting of Jeremie Frimpong on the right, with Dumfries behind him, could have immediately provided the opening goal after 50 seconds. He was launched and with his speed Theo Hernández was seen. The Leverkusen wingback’s effort was just saved by goalkeeper Mike Maignan. France could also have had a dream start. Just like the Dutch team, that team played at a high pace in the first ten minutes. Three minutes after the Frimpong opportunity, Bart Verbruggen was tested. Griezmann was given a remarkable amount of space and struck from distance. Verbruggen was, just like against Poland, extremely solid when faced with danger from the opponent.

It could have been 3-3, so to speak

What the Netherlands mainly tried: leave the ball to France. Didier Deschamps’ team is not used to that, it wants to be dangerous especially from the transition. In the Oranje transition it was the Depay-Simons couple that had to cause danger. They managed to find each other near the French sixteen meters, but there were no dangerous shots towards Maignan.

The wonderful match continued to be full of possibilities. Griezmann, who moved between the lines like a kind of ‘chameleon’, could have scored twice. Adrien Rabiot cleverly got the ball to Griezmann. He seemed to be able to slide in in front of an open goal, but he lost his balance. At the other end there was Gakpo with a well placed shot that was just tapped out of the corner by Maignan. Both teams made use of their strengths, but their weaknesses also surfaced. That made this match so exciting and compelling. After 20 minutes it could have been 3-3, so to speak.

Euro 2024 |  The Netherlands and France fail to score in an intense battle, Simons’ goal disallowed

Frimpong misses a very big chance after 50 seconds

Photo: Getty Images

The storm subsided for a while. France mainly tried to attack through the sides, and almost succeeded in the 28th minute. Marcus Thuram was launched on the right and the Gladbach winger aimed over Verbruggen’s goal. France became stronger in positional play and managed to find Griezmann better. Jerdy Schouten had to pull the emergency brake and that cost him a yellow card. Until half time, France became the dominant party. The Dutch team put moderate pressure and when they had possession of the ball they were no longer able to find Gakpo, Memphis and Simons. Frimpong, which had started so strongly, was now also well guarded. All in all, the Netherlands could be happy that they managed to score 0-0 at halftime.

Memphis and Dumfries are invisible

What was particularly striking in the first half was negative: Memphis, just like against Poland, was anything but convincing. He again lacked a lot of precision in the completion and he could hardly keep the ball with him for long. Koeman decided not to intervene at halftime. Deschamps also waited before bringing his star player Kylian Mbappé. In contrast to the first half, things were not very uplifting after the break. Both teams had tactical ties with each other, and no longer played football freely. In the first fifteen minutes there was actually no really dangerous attempt.

Aurelien Tchouameni finally had a truly dangerous moment. In the 62nd minute he just headed over after a good cross from Ousmane Dembélé. In fact, for the Dutch team it was increasingly a matter of holding back. The attacking positions could hardly be reached, if at all. Not even from the transition. Dumfries? Didn’t see it at all…

Verbruggen saves the Netherlands again, Xavi’s goal disallowed

The ‘France Rondo’ could have been rewarded in the 65th minute. The ball ended up with ‘ghost’ Griezmann via several detours. A quick action by Bart Verbruggen prevented the deserved 1-0 for Les Bleus. Koeman kept waiting to make changes. While you had the feeling that fresh legs were really necessary.


Bart Verbruggen prevented Griezmann’s goal several times

Photo: Getty Images

Before Koeman could make a substitution, there was suddenly a moment of glory for Xavi Simons. The Netherlands’ first attack in half two resulted in a goal. Memphis had its first good action of the match and shot at Maignan’s legs. It was Xavi Simons who scored on the rebound. But the flag immediately went up at the assistant referee. He judged that Dumfries was annoyingly offside in the line of the shot. After some hesitation, the VAR also agreed with that decision.

Once again, Koeman opted for ‘Redeemer Wout’ in the final phase, but he too simply could not be put into position. France was still the fittest and sharpest in the final phase. It was thanks to Joey Veerman and Stefan de Vrij that Rabiot and Giroud could not be put into position. The final whistle felt like redemption for the Dutch team. But the 69th minute will be remembered for a long time. When Simons thought he could beat the top favorite

EC FOOTBALL RESULTS, GROUP D: Netherlands-France 0-0


1. Netherlands – 4 points
2. France – 4 points
3. Austria – 3 points
4. Poland – 0 points


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