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world cup trivia
Netherlands vs Colombia
19 November 2013 21:30 SAST
2013-11-19 09:30:00 PM SAST
Ref: F. Meyer
Attendance: 51 000
Hello and welcome to live coverage of one of this evening's rather interesting international friendlies, as Colombia travel to Amsterdam to face Netherlands, with both nations having already qualified for next year's World Cup tournament in Brazil.
I'm Simon Harrison, and I will be leading you through all of the action from Amsterdam ArenA, home of Ajax, as Jose Pekerman's South American dark horses travel to face a much-changed Netherlands outfit. Plenty of rotation in the hosts' camp, with Louis van Gaal seemingly keen to see which players can be useful next summer.
Interestingly, Colombia have been seeded ahead of their opponents for the evening for the incoming World Cup, as the visitors take a much sought-after spot in Pot 1. No place among the top seeds for Oranje, despite the European side finishing as runners-up in both Euro 2012 and the 2010 World Cup tournament!
TEAM NEWS: Jetro Willems and Bruno Martins Indi bow out of tonight's match through injury and unavailability, with the likes of Robin van Persie and Arjen Robben also rested due to minor injuries. With plenty of Dutch players missing out due to injury, Colombia will feel they have a real chance to maintain their good recent momentum.
Netherlands starting line-up: Cillessen; Van der Wiel, Vlaar, Veltman, Blind; Strootman, Schaars, Van der Vaart; Depay, De Jong, Lens.
Netherlands substitutes: Janmaat, Propper, De Guzman, Fer, Narsingh, Stekelenburg, Van Aanholt, De Vrij, Krul.
Colombia starting line-up: Mondragon; Arias, Zapata, Valdes, Armero; Aguilar, Sanchez, Rodriguez; Cuadrado, Falcao, Gutierrez.
Colombia substitutes: Mejia, Ramirez, Bacca, Vargas, Alvarez, Valencia, Guarin, Martinez, Muriel, Perea, Torres, Medina, Ibarbo.
Netherlands are currently 16 games unbeaten, but Colombia will be buoyed by their recent 2-0 win over much-fancied Belgium. One of the scorers, Ibarbo, finds himself on the bench tonight, but there are plenty of interesting options for Pekerman to manipulate to his team's favour. Not least, the formidable presence of Radamel Falcao, whose name and price tag speak for themselves.
Ten minutes until kick-off, and there's certainly an sense that Colombia can prove themselves as real dark horses for the 2014 World Cup with another win against high profile opposition here tonight. Though there are changes aplenty in the Dutch camp, the young likes of Veltman and Depay can certainly prove themselves to be consistent performers at the highest level.
We are underway in Amsterdam! Another chance for Colombia to prove themselves on the international stage and to strike fear into the hearts of those nations drawn against them in the approaching World Cup rears its head! This is a tough game to call! Oranje are in their customary colours, with the visitors in a navy strip.
The atmosphere is something of a carnival, but there is a genuine sense of excitement around this fixture. Colombia are considered an exciting and dangerous side to face, and Pekerman's choice to seemingly deploy a 4-3-3 system is an interesting one.
All Netherlands in the opening minutes, as Cillessen manages to get a few early touches of the ball with his feet. De Jong is the first Oranje player to set foot in the opposition's penalty area, but Cuadrado tracks back to dispossess him.
Netherlands pick up an early free-kick, from deep on the left hand side, and Van der Vaart is able to whip a dangerous ball into the area. The delivery is flicked on by Vlaar, but strikes the hand of Lens as the Dynamo man attempts to control the awkward ball. Unfortunate for the hosts.
Colombia are yet to escape from their own half in possession of the ball, as Netherlands enjoy some healthy possession of their own. The away side are seemingly not willing to rush things or waste energy, and may instead perhaps prey on their opponent's mistakes and look to break forward at pace.
VAN DER VAART! What an outrageous effort! The Hamburg midfielder strikes the post with a curling left-footed strike, leaving 42-year-old Mondragon rather stranded! What a goal that could have been! First chance goes the way of the Oranje.
De Jong could have fumbled home that rebounding Van der Vaart effort which struck the upright, but the Ajax advanced midfielder just couldn't turn it the right side of the post. A difficult finish, but still possible. Still no warning signs from the visitors.
Ten minutes have passed, and Van Gaal will undoubtedly be rather pleased with his side's composed start. Plenty of possession, although not always in dangerous areas, and Van der Vaart striking the post signals some intent from the hosts.
Armero shows his raw pace by chasing a loose ball down the left flank, with De Vrij working incredibly hard to clear it to safety. A good challenge from the PSG full-back removes the ball from the field of play, and the Colombian travelling support cheers wildly for the commitment of their left-back.
Good goalkeeping from Cillessen! The Ajax goalkeeper races off his line to clear an intelligent through ball away from the onrushing Gutierrez. In his home stadium, you'd hope that Cillessen would easily be able to judge when the distance favours himself rushing out.
The Colombian captain, Falcao, is almost threaded through on goal, much to the rapturous applause of the noisy Colombian faithful. Cillessen is once again alive to the danger and is off his line smartly to collect. That would have been the first time we've really seen the Monaco striker this evening.
VAN DER VAART! The former Real Madrid midfielder tries his luck again, this time from inside the box, but his strike is always heading off-target. It fails to even rattle the side netting, but the intent from Van der Vaart is clear, he wants a goal here tonight.
LENS! The Dynamo man almost capitalises on a poor Colombian pass-back, managing to get himself on the end of a looping defensive header that was intended to reach Mondragon. His outstretched boot makes contact with the ball, but he can't deflect it towards goal.
Falcao is thwarted once again by Cillessen! Yet again the Ajax goalkeeper is quick off his line, and is really justifying his selection ahead of the in-form Tim Krul of Newcastle. Worrying that he's called into action so often, however.
Falcao is fed in behind the rather high Dutch defensive line once again, but Cillessen won't be beaten! Warm applause is given to the Ajax man from the Oranje supporters, as he clears the ball from the feet of the Colombian captain again.
Colombia claim for a penalty, but the referee waves away the appeals after Gutierrez looked to go to ground far too easily. Colombia are clearly looking to break with pace tonight, but Cillessen has thus far been alert to their through balls.
Another routine save for Cillessen, as Blind does just enough to deflect a Cuadrado cross towards his goalkeeper. Colombia are yet to force the opposition goalkeeper into an uncomfortable position, but there's certainly a goal in Pekerman's side here tonight.
Netherlands continue to hold a very high defensive line, forcing Colombia to launch balls over the top in the hope of Falcao or Gutierrez getting on the end of them. Van Gaal appears to have the measure of Colombia's intended game plan, with Cillessen merely having to act as a bit of a sweeper-keeper.
The atmosphere continues to be excellent, with Colombia bringing rather vocal fans and plenty of drums been exuberantly struck. Netherlands continue to have the upper hand, but the dangerous prongs of the Colombian attack are gradually making themselves known.
Good defending from Blind! James Rodriguez plays a wonderful cross-field ball in search of Cuadrado at the back post, but the Dutchman manages to divert the delivery out of play for a corner.
Good stuff from Blind yet again! Colombia look to find the head of Cuadrado once again, but the left-back is alive to the threat! He nods it half-clear, allowing for an advancing opposition midfielder to pick up possession, but the resulting shot loops harmlessly over the bar.
James Rodriguez lets his feelings be known to the referee, as a rash challenge from Schaars brings down Falcao as the talisman of a striker looks to turn. The hosts are clearly paranoid about the ability of Colombia to break very quickly.
OFFSIDE! Colombia think they should have the lead, but it's been chalked off for offside! The Dutch right-back lost the ball in a comprising area, allows for Arias to convert, but the linesman had has flag raised.
LENS! The Netherlands forward manages to get on the end of a dangerous cross, but is then shown a red card! He's lost his head then, and seemingly lashed out at a Colombian defender whilst he got back to his feet!
J. Lens is sent off by the referee!
Well, this may be a friendly, but things are getting a little bit heated now. With Netherlands down to ten men, seemingly for a throttle on Armero by Lens, it'll be hard for the hosts not to leave the gaps which their opposition prey on.
Blind is caught by a raised elbow from Arias, and the referee is quick to race over and award the right-back a yellow card. Things certainly haven't been too friendly in the last ten minutes, the game has devolved into a rather disrupted and scrappy affair.
S. Arias is cautioned by the referee.
DE JONG! The Ajax man looks to stretch and reach a good, lofted delivery, but Mondragon is quick off his line to catch the ball - leaving De Jong in a heap on the ground. He receives treatment on the sidelines, but should be okay to continue.
De Jong is replaced by Narsingh, as the Netherlands lone front man looks to have landed rather awkwardly. It could be a precautionary change, but he's headed straight down the tunnel.
Poor challenge from Aguilar! The Colombian central midfielder hacks down Van der Vaart from behind, and the Hamburg man gets back to his feet very gingerly after treatment. There's no need for such challenges to be made in a friendly.
A. Aguilar gets yellow.
L. Narsingh comes on for S. de Jong.
Another forced change for the home side, as Van der Vaart is forced off the field following that aforementioned Aguilar tackle. That really was needless, and I doubt that anybody linked with Oranje or Hamburg will be very pleased with the Colombian.
L. Fer enters play, replacing R. van der Vaart.
HALF TIME! The two teams leave the field amidst jeers from the home fans, as it seems the Dutch faithful are questioning the rather physical approach of Colombia which has seen both De Jong and Van der Vaart leave the field through injury in quick succession.
Oranje are down to ten men, following a needless grab at the throat of Armero by Lens, and Van Gaal won't be a very happy man. An already injury-ravaged Dutch squad has been further cut down, and Colombia look to be in the driving seat to exploit the inevitable gaps in the second half.
Netherlands had the better of the chances in the first half, with Van der Vaart striking the top of the upright, while Colombia grew slowly into the game as Falcao and James Rodriguez saw more of the ball. Despite Lens' dismissal, the hosts have given a reasonable account of themselves.
Colombia did have the ball in the back of the net, only for it to be ruled out for offside, as Veltman gave the ball away and allowed for Arias to take full advantage. The Dutch full-back looked distraught at letting his side down, before realising the linesman had his flag raised.
Mcnelly Torres warms up for the away side at the break, with a depleted Oranje side remaining unchanged. Van Gaal might be more overjoyed to see his side return to the dressing room healthy following the next 45 minutes, rather than win.
We are back underway for the second half! One change for the visitors, and that's all. Netherlands will hope to keep things together in the early stages of the second half, as they could easily fall apart if one goal goes in.
M. Torres comes on for A. Aguilar.
FALCAO! Good save by Cillessen, after Falcao is forced wide by Vlaar! The Ajax goalkeeper is forced to palm the ball out to the edge of the six yard box due to the ferocity of the strike, but nobody is there in blue to turn it home.
Depay gets a rare cheer from the home support, as the youngster uses a couple of stepovers to wriggle away from Arias. Netherlands are playing without a recognised frontman, with Depay and Narsingh presumably left to be the more adventurous of the advanced midfield blob.
Good challenge from Veltman! The young centre-back commits himself, throwing his body in towards Torres, who looks to get a shot away, but the sliding block is excellent.
Half chance for Netherlands, but a poor effort from Narsingh! The substitute is set the ball back well by Depay, but balloons his effort way over the crossbar under intense pressure.
CUADRADO! Torres plays a smart lofted ball over Blind, looking for the Fiorentina wide man, but a poor touch from Cuadrado sees the ball run out of play for a goal kick. Things aren't clicking offensively in the second half for the away side.
Van Gaal looks satisfied to take a draw from this game, as his side sit in disciplined banks, without a discernible striker. Colombia are currently unable to break down the Dutch lines, with Falcao dispossessed by Veltman as he looked to pivot on the edge of the box.
Despite their numerical disadvantage, the hosts continue to press, with Colombia very much playing up to their role as the away side. Though the team has no real focal point, the pacey wingers at Oranje's disposal are carrying them upfield well.
Great challenge from Blind! The Dutch left-back slid in excellently to block a cross from Cuadrado, after the Colombian winger left Vlaar for dead with a deft flick and change of pace!
TORRES! The substitute sees an effort strike the woodwork and rebound into the grateful arms of Cillessen, although the referee's whistle had already gone. Plenty of possession for the hosts, but no end product as of yet.
TORRES! The substitute tries his luck from range again, after a smart cutback from Cuadrado! Cillessen is able to hold the strike with ease, but that shot through a ruck of bodies. That could've been much worse for the Dutch shot-stopper.
DEPAY! The youngster isn't afraid to try his luck either, but skids a low drive some way wide of Mondragon's near post. A few ambitious efforts in the last few minutes really portray the cagey and quite closed nature of this game.
Cillessen is called into action again, to race off his line and claim a ball on his penalty spot, as an intricate through ball aimed towards Falcao doesn't come off. Oranje break, and Fer is denied brilliantly by a flying block!
Plenty of half chances, but either keeper is yet to make a save in this match. Collecting loose balls and dealing with pass-backs is the most that that the pair have had to do thus far, and I imagine they're rather pleased with the scenario, given the amount of chances.
Half an hour left, and to say this game is in a lull, would be an understatement. Both sets of supporters are in surprisingly good voice, given that the lack of cutting edge from both sides is rather worrying as we gradually approach the pinnacle of world football next summer.
K. Strootman goes into the referee's book.
To add a bit more spark to the game, Victor Ibarbo is being readied for the away side. He'll add a bit of pace and power to a Colombian front line who has struggled to impose themselves against the solid pairing of Veltman and Vlaar.
T. Gutiérrez is done for the day. V. Ibarbo is his replacement.
Veltman is penalised for a shove on Zapata in the penalty area, as another half chance for Oranje goes begging. Neither side have even mustered up a shot on goal in the past five minutes, as the match continues to stagnate.
RODRIGUEZ! The Monaco man forces a comfortable stop for Cillessen, after cutting in from the right and unleashing a drive with his stronger left foot. A warning sign, at last!
Falcao looks to nip in ahead of Veltman, but loses his footing at the vital moment! Just as the Monaco striker looked to burst into a pocket of space at the near post, his standing leg slips from beneath him, sending him plunging to the turf. Relief for Oranje, however.
E. Valencia enters play, replacing C. Sánchez.
Colombia look a little short of offensive ideas, but Netherlands are dropping deeper and deeper in the hope of closing down the space which their opposition need to break with pace. The away side are the more dominant, but Cillessen remains relatively untroubled.
ZAPATA! The Milan defender lumbers up from centre-half to balloon an effort from 25 yards over the bar! The home crowd jeer, that was an awful attempt.
GREAT SAVE! Falcao forces an excellent save out of Cillessen, as the young goalkeeper is forced to throw himself smartly to his left to claim a firm header! The linesman pulls things back however, as Rodriguez was deemed not to keep the initial cutback in play.
We're heading into the last ten minutes of this match-up, and those hoping for an open, end-to-end classic have been rather disappointed so far! There's still plenty of attacking flair on this Amsterdam ArenA field however, so a flurry of late offensive activity can't be ruled out!
S. Schaars is done for the day. J. de Guzmán is his replacement.
J. Cuadrado is done for the day. J. Martínez is his replacement.
DEPAY! A good block from Valdez prevents the youngster's strike from making its way through to goal, after the 19-year-old carved open some space for himself well.
CLOSE! A great, powerful run from Ibarbo allows the Colombian forward to get to the byline, but his attempted cross is too high! Falcao steams in towards the back post, but the delivery is hopelessly over his head!
Great feet from Depay! He has the home crowd on their feet, as his jinking footwork frees him of three markers, before he is unlawfully tugged down. Excellent from the Dutch forward, he's been their only real bright spark tonight.
R. Falcao is cautioned by the referee.
Only a few minutes remain for a player to have a memorable impact on what has been a rather unmemorable night! Pekerman opts to take off his captain, allowing for the speedy Muriel to have a very brief opportunity to prove his worth.
C. Bacca enters the game and replaces R. Falcao.
Good defensive header from Veltman! The centre-back takes no prisoners, rising above Muriel to nod the ball some distance, to safety. Netherlands break, but a looping cross from the left is cleared by Armero.
The referee is forced to book Torres for kicking the ball away, after Valencia looked to catch Depay with a glance of his elbow. The home crowd cheer the referee's decision, you don't see that too often!
M. Torres is cautioned by the referee.
Van Gaal presumably wishes to give one of the younger personnel of his squad the ovation he deserves, as he replaces Depay for the remaining few minutes. The 19-year-old has looked the part tonight, he's been comfortable on the ball and created space for himself regularly.
P. van Aanholt comes on for M. Depay.
FULL TIME! The referee calls time on what was a very damp and drab affair in Amsterdam, with Netherlands drawing 0-0 with Colombia to increase their unbeaten run to 17 matches. The ten men of Oranje did well to compete despite the numerical disadvantage.
Depay was one of the only positive points for the home side offensively, and Van Gaal will presumably be more concerned with the additional two players he lost to injury in the form of De Jong and Van der Vaart. Lens' silly red card is another sour point.
Mondragon had almost nothing to do all game, though a couple of good blocks from Zapata and Valdez helped the 42-year-old remain untroubled. James Rodriguez and Cuadrado the brightest players for the visiting outfit.
That's all we have time for from the Amsterdam ArenA, but we hope you enjoyed our coverage of Netherlands hard-fought 0-0 draw with Colombia. I've been Simon Harrison, and I hope to see you again next time.
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