Memphis Depay seals Dutch win over France with outrageous penalty
- Author: Stacy Allen Nov 18, 2018,
Nov 18, 2018, 3:06
"We've have shown we are broken the slump but I did not expect that we would be so much better through 90 minutes", said a delighted Ronald Koeman after a 2-0 win in Rotterdam inflicted a first defeat on the French since they won the World Cup in Russian Federation.
The margin of victory flattered Didier Deschamps' injury-hit team, with goalkeeper Hugo Lloris making a string of good saves in the second half to deny Denzel Dumfries, Depay, and Frenkie de Jong.
"I was not expecting a ideal match from our side but that's really what it was".
Wijnaldum's goal came practically at the midway point of a match dominated by the hosts, who have bounced back from the doldrums after failing to qualify for the World Cup. We have shown on such a night that we have made enormous steps. "This is just the start".
Koeman hailed the renewed enthusiasm of his side, as they seek to drag the national team back onto the big stage at Euro 2020. "We weren't at the races and didn't show enough". Kylian Mbappe and Olivier Giroud delivered the goals for france and Ryan Babel scored for the Netherlands. Lloris had to get down well to parry a late free kick past the post before again saving from the Lyon forward following a well-worked corner. "The score could have been even more flattering for the Dutch", said Lloris, easily France's best performer.
Deschamps, whose saw his side's 15-match unbeaten run ended, added: 'We're not going to take refuge behind absences, the high level has requirements and we did not meet them.
Asked if he hopes to return to the full Netherlands squad next time, Kluivert said, "That's not for me to say, but I'll do my best to make it as hard as possible for the trainer, and of course I hope to play football in the big Dutch national team".
France, despite losing their first game since winning the World Cup, remained top of the Group One standings but have completed their campaign.
"It is exceptional how he reads the game", Koeman said of De Jong. "We lost to a Dutch team that played very well and we did not play well".