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2:1 against Türkiye – Netherlands trembled into the semi-finals

2:1 against Türkiye – Netherlands trembled into the semi-finals
2:1 against Türkiye – Netherlands trembled into the semi-finals

Cheers in Orange

In the semi-finals, the Dutch will face England, who beat Switzerland on penalties earlier in the evening.

The Netherlands are in the semi-finals of a European Football Championship for the first time since 2004. The 1988 champions turned the exciting quarter-final against Turkey in Berlin on Saturday and won 2-1 (0-1) thanks to a great effort in the second half. Stefan de Vrij (70th) and an own goal forced by Cody Gakpo by Mert Müldür (76th) gave the “Oranje” a semi-final duel with England.

Turkey once again delivered a passionate performance, which at times was reminiscent of the one in the round of 16 against Austria (2:1). The Turks again scored with a header from a defender. But Samet Akaydin’s goal (35th) was not enough for the “Milli Takim” to advance to the semifinals in Berlin like in 2008.

The fuss about the wolf salute – a right-wing extremist symbol – and the suspended defender Merih Demiral had heated up the situation before the European Championship match in Berlin. Thousands of Turks responded to the call to show the wolf salute via social networks during a fan march that was broken up by the police and in the stadium during the anthem. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan also watched the match in Berlin’s Olympic Stadium.

Turkey coach Vinzenco Montella was forced to make changes not only because of Demiral. Two other players were missing because of yellow card suspensions. Akaydin and captain Hakan Calhanoglu, who were suspended against Austria, returned to a team that faced the favorites with five defenders from the start. The Dutch team ran out with the same line-up after their comfortable round of 16 victory against Romania (3-0).

Turks take the lead again

The first attempts to approach the opponents belonged to the “Oranje” – a shot by Memphis Depay whizzed over the crossbar in the first minute – but Turkey once again fought back in every duel. After 20 minutes, the favorites’ momentum was slowed and the first pinpricks were made. Virgil van Dijk just managed to defused a good counterattack opportunity after a through ball from young star Arda Güler against Baris Yilmaz (30′).

The underdog had already gradually established itself more in the opponent’s half. The Turkish lead was no longer particularly surprising. Güler found Akaydin’s head at the far post with his weaker right foot, and goalie Bart Verbruggen did not look good in the six-yard box. The defender kissed the Turkish coat of arms on his shirt to frenzied applause. He had moved up because of a corner.

The Dutch struggled to react, but the prominent offensive failed to develop at all until half-time. Steven Bergwijn stayed in the dressing room for Wout Weghorst. By bringing in the powerful centre-forward, Ronald Koeman’s team managed to turn things around. Depay missed the ball by a few centimetres after Weghorst’s header (51′), and further clear chances were slow to come.

Turkey remained dangerous from set pieces. Güler flicked a free kick onto the outside post (56th minute), but Verbruggen would have been there to save the sly attempt. The Brighton goalie parried an unpleasant shot from Kenan Yildiz a little later, Weghorst prevented the follow-up shot while sitting down (65th minute) – and tried to score himself from a tight angle on the other side.

The following short corner resulted in the equalizer. De Vrij rose unchallenged at the penalty spot and headed the ball in powerfully. Six minutes later, the game was turned around. Müldür threw himself unsuccessfully at a cross pass from Denzel Dumfries (76′).

The Turks did not give up yet, but the Dutch held out against the onslaught. Verbruggen defused the last chance, saving from Semih Kilicsoy in injury time.

Netherlands – Türkiye final score 2:1 (0:1).

Berlin, Olympic Stadium, 70.091, SR Turpin (FRA).

Gates:
0:1 (35.) Akaydin
1:1 (70.) The Free
1:2 (76.) Müldür (own goal)

Netherlands: Verbruggen – Dumfries, De Vrij, Van Dijk, Ake (73. Van de Ven) – Schouten, Reijnders (73. Veerman) – Bergwijn (46. Weghorst), Simons (87. Zirkzee), Gakpo – Depay (87. Frimpong)

Turkey: Günok – Müldür (82. Celik), Ayhan (89. Kilicsoy), Akaydin (83. Tosun), Bardakci, Kadioglu – Güler, Özcan (77. Yokuslu), Calhanoglu, Yildiz (77. Aktürkoglu) – Yilmaz

Yellow cards: Tosun, Montella (coach) and Simons, Ake, Van Dijk, Weghorst

Red card: Yildirim (substitute Türkiye/unsportsmanlike conduct)

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