Friday, June 13, 2008

Euro 2008 Liveblog: France v. Netherlands

This is the stuff of sandwich dreams. I'll tak slice of Noemie Lenoir (Claude Makelele's wife) and a slice of Sylvie Van der Vaart (Rafael's wife) with some cured TFA meat.
If Sylvie adds a couple million pounds to Rafael's transfer fee, I would have no problem with that.
France is looking to rebound from a moribund 0-0 draw with Romania. Star-gazing Raymond Domenech will have Thierry Henry and Patrick Vieira healthy to hopefully add panache to the French attack.
Netherlands on the other hand are coming off the high of a thorough route of the World Champion Italy. But, the Dutch squad isn't without its faults. The defense is suspect and was lucky the Italians didn't capitalize on several chances. There may not be anything Marco Van Basten can do about that but it will definitely be something to watch in the match.

Lineups after the jump...

Coupet -- Gallas, Sagnol, Thuram, Evra -- Malouda, Makalele, Govou, Toulalan, Ribery -- Henry

Van der Sar -- Van Bronckhorst, Mathijsen, Ooijer, Boulahrouz -- Van der Vaart, Engelaar, De Jong, Sneijder -- van Nistelrooy, Kuyt

Three changes to the French lineup. Evra in for Abidal, Henry and Govou on for Benzema and Anelka.

No changes for the rampant Dutch side.

Oooh...ESPN just showed a fan in the Euro '88 Champion Holland jerseys featured here, and comment Joet Smeeps confirmed was still widely worn in the land of tulips.

Here come the kiddies.

And, there's Arsene Wenger!


I think the team shots are really angering Le Pen.

Prediction: 2-2.

Thuram and Van der Sar exchange the little flags. Do you think they just have a wall full of them for all the games they skippered their respective teams?

0:00 French starts the match.

Fashion note: The Dutch are in their Oranje jerseys with taped on numbers, with light blue sockes and white short pants. I really fancy these kits.

2:00 Ribery serves the ball into the box but Holland clears nicely. It's already been a whistle filled match.

3:00 Van Nistelrooy with a weak turn and shot that Coupet scoops up easily.

4:00 Makalele fouls Kuyt with a flying elbow to the head but no card.

5:00 Ribery gets a head on a Malouda cross but can't get it on target. Not bad for the little guy.

8:00 Lots of midfield possession for both teams but nothing doing in the advanced third.

10:00 Goal!! 1-0 Holland Kuyt. Kuyt heads corner that he won off of a long pass from Boulahrouz.

Van Bronckhorst on the service. Nice tournamnet Gio is having, no?

13:00 Well, this should open up the match, but does France have the midfield quality to do anything?

Dirk Kuyt!!

16:00 Sneijder with an ambitious shot from 25 yards goes over.

18:00 The referee should really have a different color shirt on. The dark grey is perhaps just too similar shade with the dark blue of France.

20:00 The Dutch are looking absolutely latin in their one-touch passing. Kuyt gets on the end of a French deflection but the defender manages to unsettle him and Kuyt skies it over.

21:00 First French penetration by Gouvou, but VDS gets a kicksave to it for a corner. On the ensuing corner VDS collects the ball after it is swung around the box.

25:00 France is picking it up nicely. A good 1-2 from Henry to Govou, but van Bronckhorst troubles Govou from behind (dirty!) to unsettle the shot.

27:00 Kuyt is rampant. Boulahrouz throws it in and Kuyt ends up with the ball, lays it off to a Boulahrouz who strafes it across the front of the goal wide.

31:00 Sneijder dispossesses Sagnol easily which leads to a long spell of Dutch possession in the midfield. The team is just probing now...looking for that nice, juicy French opening.

33:00 Makalele gets booked for another flying elbow to the face of van der Vaart.

35:00 Malouda gets a shot on goal from 25 but VDS saves easily. On the ensuing possession, France moves up the left flank and swings the ball to the middle where Govou strikes from 18, but right to VDS.

And, again, the French are charging, unusual since they generally retreat, with Ribery getting a good shot in on VDS, who dives to his left with the save.

The Dutch defense is looking Swiss like.

37:00 Ribery sends it across the goal face but no French player can get on the end of it.

38:00 Sneijder with a bit of overconfidence from 30 yards.

42:00 Engelaar is 6'6"? That's huge. Henry looks a bit off pace.

43:00 Maka serves Henry on the topcenter of the 18, Henry turns but can't get it on frame.

45:00 Toulalan fouls van der Vaart. I'll comfort Sylvie.

Tweet, tweet. Holland 1 - 0 France.

The first half was a tale of two halves. I guess that would make it quarters. Whatever. The Dutch dominated the first half striking Goonie Gold with Sloth Dirk Kuyt. But, France settled down and had numerous opportunities only directly aimed them at Van der Sar.

See you in a few.

Second Half

46:00 Robben on Engelaar. More offense. Sweet.

47:00 Henry shows his first sign of class turning the Dutch defender around, crossing in front of the goal but Ribery couldn't get a solid touch on it.

49:00 Sagnol crosses the free kick to Gallas who rifles it in from 40. The ball caroms around a couple times finally reaching Henry who fires but its blocked by Ooijer. Henry appeals for a hand ball but I haven't seen the replay yet. Nevertheless, good scramble defense for the Dutch.

Replays seem to show it went off Ooijer's arm.

52:00 Now Ooijer gets booked after Henry throws a temper tantrum.

54:00 Henry BLOWS it. Malouda bikes it over his head and Henry runs on all alone with VDS and tries to chip it but sends it over the goal. What a putz!

55:00 Robin van Persie on for Kuyt. Jesus...the best defense is a good offense I guess.

56:00 Sneijder gets a good strong header in on Coupet, but it was just too far out.

58:00 Terrible free kick by the Dutch. Robben sends it right into the oncharging Maka.

59:00 Goal!!! 2-0 Holland! Van Persie. What an amazing play by van Nistlerooy to keep the ball in play to Robben who streaks down the left flank and crosses it to Van Persie who puts it on Coupet and just trickles past Coupet.

61:00 France on the attack again. Ribery strikes it well at VDS, but he volleyball spikes it back.

I missed it but Gomis is on for Malouda.

I still can't believe that last goal. The Dutch have the two best build-up goals in the tournament.

63:00 Robben sends in a strong daisy cutter to Coupet who gets a hand to it.

67:00 van Persie dispossesses Thuram and gets in on gaol but plays a blind ball to the middle of the box, but no Dutch players were trailing. He should have shot.

70:00 Sneijder sends a free kick into the 6 yard box but Coupet gobbles it.

71:00 GOAL!!! Henry. 2-1 Holland. Sagnol crosses it in to a streaking Henry in the 6 yard box, just touching his toe to the ball. Perfect pass and touch.

72:00 GOAL!!! Robben. 3-1 Holland. On the ensuing kickoff, Sneijder feeds Robben who beats Coupet near and high. Amazing shot from near the touchline. Wow.

75:00 Anelka on for Govou. Only 45 seconds between the last two goals. I was too busy typing and didn't even see the goal until the replay.

76:00 Henry trips Van Persie. Nice guy.

Van Bronckhorst fouls Gomis just outside the box. Ribery lines up over the ball from 22...but just chips it over to Henry who heads it over. Andy Gray is merciless on Henry's heading ability. Hilarious.

78:00 Bouma on for van der Vaart. Evra just sent a daisy cutter to VDS' right but its wide.

82:00 Maka slips on his arse when he had a great chance to get a shot on goal. Toulalan booked.

83:00 Van Nistlerooy almost gets on the scoresheet after a long ball from the back finds his head and goes just over Coupet but he recovers to save for a corner. Just a bit more pace and its 4-1.

85:00 Coupet comes out of his box to keep van Persie from getting in on goal alone. Just a bit too far from van Persie.

86:00 Mathijsen gets in on Anelka in the area to keep Anelka's shot from going on goal. Penalty appeal but to no avail.

87:00 Ribery over the ball from 23 but just over the goal.

89:00 Robben threatens again going a yard wide right. He really has been a phenom this half.

90:00 Two added minutes.

90:00 +2 GOAL!!! 4-1 Holland Sneijder with a brilliant shot from 18 over the keeper into the top shelf. Just off the bottom of the bar.

Game 4-1 Holland.

Holland advances and keeps its life from the group of death. France needs a Holland victory over Romania and its own victory over Italy to advance.

What a marvelous match for the Dutch. Again. The extra offense in the second half was some genius from Van Basten.

As the commenters have said, France just got cooked in the Dutch Oven, which is why all French are stinky.

Who was the man of the match? Van der Sar? Kuyt? Robben? Sneijder? I don't know. Kuyt was certainly the best in the first half, but Robben was great in the second and Van der Sar had some good saves.

I'll go with Robben who seemed to brighten the Dutch offense significantly.

Join me tomorrow for Spain - Russia Sweden.


Andrew said...

Orion star system dictates: France 3, Netherlands 2.

/wishing upon a (french) star

Ian said...

She looks cold.

Keith said...

How the hell was Evra not starting before?

Oh right; the stars didn't align for him.

/maybe Claudio Reyna was right

The NY Kid said...

Allons enfants de la Patrie,
Le jour de gloire est arrivé ! Contre nous de la tyrannie,
L'étendard sanglant est levé.
L'étendard sanglant est levé.
Entendez-vous dans les campagnes
Mugir ces féroces soldats ?
Ils viennent jusque dans nos bras
Égorger nos fils, nos compagnes !

Aux armes, citoyens !
Formez vos bataillons !
Marchons, marchons !
Qu'un sang impur
Abreuve nos sillons !

Aux armes, citoyens !
Formons nos bataillons !
Marchons, marchons !
Qu'un sang impur
Abreuve nos sillons !

Andrew said...

Best. Anthem. Ever.

Coming from a German, that's tough. My high school French teacher made us sing it during class.

Also, whatever happened to the tWWL/Coldplay combo thingamajig for the Euros? Was Martin et al they usurped by The Rolling Stones?

The NY Kid said...

Allez Les Bleus, Allez Les Bleus, Allez!

The Fan's Attic said...

It's ironic that the French anthem has lots of verse about fighting, but, you know, really doesn't fight.

The NY Kid said...

sniff, sniff.

And what's with "William of Nassau"?

Andrew said...

ribery is handsome.

The NY Kid said...

Le Pen can eat me. It's all about the Bleu, Blanc et Beur

The NY Kid said...

Willy Sagnol is not fast.

The NY Kid said...

Fuck you Dirk Kuyt.

Andrew said...

ahh, the Maginot line defense being employed by the French. Interesting.

hockalees said...

An early goal should open this game up, if it wasn't going to be an attack-fest already.

I hope my DVR is functioning properly...

The NY Kid said...

To not start Nasri, and not even select Clichy and Sagna for the squad is unforgivable. If we lose, Domenech should definitely be fired.

And yes, the ref should be wearing a different color.

And fuck Dirk Kuyt.

Mike Georger said...

i was one of kuyts biggest detractors earlier in the season but he has been in incredible form since the winter. maybe he finally has adjusted to a new country and is back to his holland days of old. heres hoping because man, liverpool could use the help on the right.

ü75 said...

Dirk Kuyt? Really?

Ribery should have had a goal about 5 minutes ago. He had about two full yards of open net, but put it right at van der Sar.

ü75 said...


Will you also post the lyrics to Alouette? I think it's French-Canadian, but still. That is an awesome song.

The NY Kid said...

I absolutely will not! French-Canadians are inferior to the real French.

ü75 said...


The Fan's Attic said...

That's very Le Pen of you NYK.

The NY Kid said...

well, I'm in a foul mood for obvious reasons.

The NY Kid said...


The NY Kid said...

how the fuck did Titi miss that?

hockalees said...

how the fuck did Titi miss that?

He left Arsenal, that's how...

The NY Kid said...

Makelele got away with some infringement there. And good lord is Ribery fast.

The NY Kid said...

game over. Fuck you van Persie - couldn't do that for Arsenal all year you useless twat.

The Likely Lad said...

adieu les bleus

Mike Georger said...

and fans of exciting football everywhere rejoice at the fact that we may not have to see france and italy much longer

gtfo, diaf, etc

The Likely Lad said...


Andrew said...

wow. simply, wow.

lifeline withdrawn by robben.

The NY Kid said...

what the fuck is going on here?

The Likely Lad said...

according to espn, the dutch brought on Ruud van Persie at the half.

ü75 said...

Really? Twice in two games?

The NY Kid said...

with a loss today, Les Bleus need to beat Italy and hope for a tie or loss for Romania against the Dutch

qualude conduct said...

Franc Ribery. Friday the 13th. Fitting.

The Likely Lad said...

they did it last time too??

The NY Kid said...

how is it possible to sustain 27 injuries in 4 years? Is he Mr. Glass?

The Likely Lad said...

Fitting that a rematch of the wc final could be rendered moot by Romania.

hockalees said...

Re: Andy Gray's comment on Titi's heading abilities.

He could do it when he was wearing red and white...

The Likely Lad said...

great call. Dutch oven, indeed.

The NY Kid said...

Now this is just embarassing. Domenech needs to be fired immediately.

And my arse hurts.

greghull said...

A Dutch Oven? So it really sticks in Bern!

qualude conduct said...


The Likely Lad said...

NYK- Jenas, Bendtner, Keane, Lennon, and Malbranque have what in common?

Joep Smeets said...


oh. my. god. I'm off to celebrate

The Likely Lad said...

with a schmoke and a pancake? a bong and a blintz? (isn't dat veird...?)

The NY Kid said...

@Likely - they're all wankers?

@Fan's Attic - you have super-powers if you're liveblogging Spain-Russia tomorrow. I think you meant Spain-Sweden.