Sports, Football

Netherlands qualify for World Cup


By AFP
Published : 17 Nov 2021 07:03 PM | Updated : 19 Nov 2021 03:40 PM

Two late goals by Steven Bergwijn and Memphis Depay on Tuesday saw the Netherlands book a ticket to the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, as they held Norway at bay with a 2-0 victory in Rotterdam.

Bergwijn, the standout player of the evening on the right wing, drilled the ball into the roof of the net following an assist by Arnaut Danjuma after a lacklustre 83 minutes that saw both sides struggle to create chances.

Bergwijn again played a key role in the Dutch's second goal a few minutes later, after a counter-attack saw him run almost the length of the field before passing the ball to Depay, who slotted it past a diving Orjan Nyland.

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Depay's 12th goal of the qualifying campaign rounded off the evening for the Netherlands, who only needed a draw against Norway to finish top of Group G ahead of Turkey and the Norwegians.

"They stuck to the game plan, they were a lot more compact," Dutch coach Louis van Gaal told the NOS public broadcaster.

Van Gaal admitted he was "worried that things could go wrong", especially after the his side's shocking 2-2 draw against Montenegro over the weekend when they let a two-goal lead slip in the final 10 minutes.

"But this evening we kept the match under control," he added.

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