Netherlands manager Bert van Marwijk was left to reflect on a tournament of unfulfilled promise as his side crashed out of Euro 2012.
The Dutch, who came into the tournament regarded as one of the favourites, finished bottom of Group B after falling to Portugal 2-1 in their final group game.
Despite losing to both Denmark and Germany, the Netherlands went into their final encounter with Portugal knowing a win would give them a fighting chance of qualification.
Yet two goals from Cristiano Ronaldo soon dashed any hopes van Marwijk’s men had of reaching the quarter finals.
“I can’t deny that this is a major deception for us,” Van Marwijk told NOS.
“In all the three games we started well, but we couldn’t hold it, just like today. We came up front with 1-0 but we need to hold on after a good start. We weren’t able to do that again.
“We didn’t have the good shape in this tournament to create goals. We give away chances too easily and then we concede goals. The first match against Denmark was very important. After that match we became insecure.”
Van Marwijk was hoping Netherlands could repeat their form of two years ago when they reached the 2010 World Cup final, but the 60-year-old admitted the performances in Poland and Ukraine never quite reached those standards.
“I knew all along that it would be very hard to go to the quarter-final,” he admitted. “I had the hope that we could bring another performance like two years ago at the World Cup.
“When you look at the age of the team, you know that we couldn’t get any better. We only have ourselves to blame.”
The team’s performance has placed a question mark over the future of Van Marwijk as head coach but the Netherlands boss insisted he would not be drawn into speculation.
“I’m not thinking about my future now,” he said.
“I’m busy with a lot of things, but not with that after a match like this.”
- Soccer News Like
- Be the first of your friends!