June 3, 2023

The Netherlands’ manager Ronald Koeman has expressed disappointment following his team’s 4-0 defeat to France in the opening round of the Euro 2024 qualifiers.

The French team dominated the match, with early goals from Antoine Griezmann and Dayot Upamecano, followed by a classy brace from Kylian Mbappé.

Koeman admitted that his team had little chance against such a formidable opponent.

“We had no chance. Eight minutes on the clock and we’re already 2-0 down….Against such a team, you have to be very good.“

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He also pointed out that several of his key players were absent due to a viral infection that had affected the squad.

Koeman was critical of his team’s performance, stating that they had major shortcomings in all areas of the game. He acknowledged that they should have been more aggressive and made fewer mistakes, but he did not want to make excuses for their poor performance.

 “We showed very little in this game. I did not expect such a gap. It’s not the team I had in mind to line up, but you know the circumstances.

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“I don’t want to make excuses for this poor performance. We should have been much more aggressive and should have made fewer mistakes. There was nothing very positive. We showed major shortcomings in all areas of the game.”

He was particularly concerned about the defensive errors that led to two of France’s goals, and he lamented the quality of Mbappé, who was given too much freedom.

“What hurts is that the first and fourth goals came from defensive errors”, Koeman said.

“And, of course, it’s also down to the quality of Mbappé. We had identified that we had to be very careful about these plays, and we did not pay enough attention.

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