Netherlands Euro Cup Betting Prediction – Can Holland Buck History And Come Up Big At A Major Tournament?
Online betting sharps who like attacking football should love the Netherlands, who have disappointed in major tournaments in the past; for their great history, Holland should have more championships and that may scare some off when it comes to Euro 2012.
Manager: Bert van Marwijk (since July 2008)
Best Euro Finish: Champions (1988)
Soccer Betting Odds: +180 to win Group B, +700 to win Euro 2012
The Netherlands scored 37 goals while winning nine and losing one of their 10 qualification matches, and those 37 goals were the most of any team trying to get into Euro 2012. Klaas-Jan Huntelaar led all scorers in 2011 with 10 goals, while Dirk Kuyt added five goals four assists. Holland has an embarrassment of attacking riches with those two up front, along with Robin van Persie, while the midfield is loaded with playmakers Rafael van der Vaart and Wesley Sneijder, who was arguably the best player at World Cup 2010 and usually raises his game when he pulls on the orange shirt of the national team. But the most important player could be Arjen Robben, who can play either on the wing or up front, and his pace and close control makes him absolutely terrifying to the opposition. He has had an up-and-down campaign with club Bayern Munich, but he has come on in the last month and helped them to the Champions League final. If he is in the mood and healthy, Robben can be a game-changer.
Now manager Bert van Marwijk has to figure out what formation he wants to play as he went with a 4-5-1 in qualification, but there will be pressure to play Huntelaar and van Persie together as both had fantastic club campaigns with Schalke 04 and Arsenal, respectively. That is just one of many decisions for the manager to make to improve the Netherlands’ soccer betting odds.
Holland allowed just eight goals, but it’s tough for the opposition to score when they’re constantly picking the ball out of their own net, which is a solid form of defense for the Netherlands. Still, they have the players to halt the progress of the opposition. Captain Mark van Bommel shields the defense along with Nigel de Jong, who did his best Bruce Lee impression on the chest of Spain’s Xabi Alonso in the World Cup final loss in South Africa, but when he remains disciplined, he is a fine defensive midfielder. The back line is set with Joris Mathijsen and John Heitinga in the middle, while Gregory van der Wiel and Erik Pieters will be on the outside for the Netherlands, and the latter pair may be more important as they’re still young; van der Wiel is 24, while Pieters is 23 and they may have to stem their attacking abilities occasionally to avoid putting their older teammates in bad positions.
Another huge decision for van Marwijk comes in goal, where Michel Vorn looks set to take over for Maarten Stekelenburg, who played well in South Africa, but he had an inconsistent season with Roma. Vorn was great for Swansea City in England all season as the club played well above expectations and his ability to stop penalties played a big role in that. Vorn also played four of the five qualification matches in 2011, so he should have pole position on the No.1 spot for the Netherlands.
This will be a massive tournament for van Marwijk, who was criticized from all corners after his defensive approach in the World Cup loss to Spain; instead of playing the attacking style that got them to the final, van Marwijk chose to kick Spain all over the pitch and absorb pressure, which didn’t work. However, he received a contract extension that carries through to the next European Championship in 2016, so van Marwijk has plenty of time to make up for South Africa, and this is his first chance to make something happen.
How It Will Play Out
The Netherlands would be soccer betting favorites in any other group, but since they’re in Group B with Germany, Holland is rated at +180 in the “Group of Death”, while coming in at +700 to win the tournament. The match between the two rivals could be the best of the group stages and the Netherlands will have revenge on their minds after a 3-0 loss in Germany in a November friendly.
That being said, the Orange have the talent to win the group, which is probably a better wager than to win it all. For all their attacking skill throughout the years, the Netherlands have won the European Championship just once, back in 1988 (on German soil), and they’ve never won the World Cup. It wouldn’t be a huge surprise if they won here, but looking at their history, it’s hard to have confidence in Holland’s Euro Cup betting chances to win in 2012.