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Van Tiggelen: Huntelaar needs to start

SoccerNews in General Soccer News 10 Jun 2012

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Netherlands boss Bert van Marwijk has been urged to hand Klaas-Jan Huntelaar a starting berth by former international Adri van Tiggelen.

Robin van Persie was given the nod to start in Netherlands’ Euro 2012 opener against Denmark, but cut a frustrating figure as he missed a number of chances throughout the match.

Huntelaar was introduced as a late substitute on Saturday and van Tiggelen, who was part of the Netherlands’ Euro 1988 title-winning squad, thinks it is time for the Schalke striker to feature from the offset against Germany on Wednesday.

“I guess it is about time that Klaas-Jan Huntelaar starts up front, I am kind of fed up with Robin van Persie,” he told NUSport.

“It is a fact he did an amazing job at Arsenal this season, but his performances have been heavily disappointing in the Netherlands national team.

“Besides, we have two defensive midfielders who are hardly involved in attack. If Denmark benefited from that, Germany and Portugal will definitely do it as well.”

The 54-year-old was then critical of the Dutch performance on Saturday and disputed the notion that his country deserved to win the match.

“We just did not play well,” he explained. “We showed too little passion and fierceness.

“Then I hear people saying that Netherlands had many opportunities to score, but I do not know if those people were watching the same match.

“With our quality, we cannot afford a loss against Denmark. The Dutch players must show some more.”

Netherlands also lost their first match in 1988, against the Soviet Union, but went on to win the tournament. However, van Tiggelen is not confident of a repeat performance this time around.

“I would not rely on the same process as in 1988,” he said. “We simply played very well in the first match against Soviet Union.

“We played much better than this team did against Denmark, and I cannot imagine facing the Danes again in the final.

“Besides, this Dutch team was also disappointing in the friendly matches too, I was fearing elimination in the group phase already.”

Netherlands tackle Germany on Wednesday before locking horns with Portugal in their final group match four days later.

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