Dutch shocked by Danes as Krohn-Dehli’s goal edges Group B win in Kharkiv
Holland 0-1 Denmark
Metalist Stadium, Kharkiv
Saturday 9 June 2012
Michael Krohn-Dehli’s shock first-half goal gave Denmark an incredible win over much-fancied Holland, bringing back memories of their Euro 1992 Championship victory.
Holland controlled the game for huge periods with their plethora of stars both on and off the field but Denmark held their nerve and earned a magnificent three points.
The Dutch laid siege to a vulnerable looking Denmark team with a handful of chances inside the first ten minutes.
Robin van Persie and Ibrahim Afellay went close before Wesley Sneijder should have done far better with a headed effort after a sublime Van Persie cross.
Denmark, however, were ahead on 24 minutes totally against the run of play, stunning the Bert van Marwijk's heralded side.
Simon Poulson surged down the left but it looked that he had run into a cul-de-sac when his cross was blocked.
But his left-footed, attempted delivery was deflected into the path of the unmarked Krohn-Dehli who skipped through the orange backline and smashed the ball through the legs of goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg.
Denmark then, after working so hard to get ahead, almost allowed the Dutch back into the game. A terrible pass out of the defence fell straight to the feet of Arjen Robben who bore down on the goal with two team-mates flanking him.
Instead of passing, the former Chelsea man went for personal glory and bent an effort at goal with his left foot, only to see the shot smack the post and bounce away to safety.
In the second half the Dutch continued to pepper the Danish goal with efforts but none broke the resolve of Morten Olsen’s side.
Robben is not renowned for his heading prowess but even he should have done better with his effort on 63 minutes after one of a number of inviting Sneijder crosses.
A double substitution brought on Rafa van der Vaart and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar and the latter should have equalised with his first touch, only for a tame effort to be blocked by the outstretched Danish keeper.
The final whistle sparked scenes of jubilation from the exhausted and triumphant ‘Great Danes’.
Stekelenburg, Van Der Wiel (Kuyt 84), Heitinga, Vlaar, Willems, Van Bommel, De Jong (Van der Vaart 71), Sneijder, Robben, (Huntelaar 71), Van Persie.
Coach: Bert van Marwijk
Andersen, Kjaer, Agger, S Poulsen, Jacobsen, Kvist, Eriksen (Schone 74), Zimling, Krohn-Dehli, Rommedahl (Mikkelsen 83), Bendtner
Subs not used: Lindegaard, Schmeichel, Bjelland, Wass, Poulsen, Okore, Silberbauer, J Poulsen, Kahlenberg, Pedersen,
Coach: Morten Olsen