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Thursday 23 October  
Luuk de Jong (third left) during a Holland training session at Katwijk on Monday
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Katwijk aan Zee, Netherlands
Katwijk aan Zee, Netherlands

Luuk de Jong hoping for third cap against San Marino

Published on : 30 August 2011 - 1:14pm | By Theo Tamis (Photo: RNW)
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The Netherlands need just one more win to secure a top-two finish in qualifying group E for next year’s European Championships finals. And that victory looks more than likely this week, with a meeting with San Marino scheduled for Friday.

It’s the FIFA world rankings number one playing the bottom of the list, but Holland are taking the match seriously all the same, says upcoming FC Twente talent Luuk de Jong.

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Interview with Luuk de Jong (in Dutch)

De Jong, who turned 21 at the weekend, is currently on top form and might win his third cap for Holland this week. A relative newcomer, he relishes his time with the Dutch squad.

“These are precious moments for me, a great experience. Of course, it would be even greater if I could play a few minutes, but I’m very glad to be here as a member of the Dutch squad.”

Luuk de Jong received his first call-up for Oranje for the February friendly against Austria and was brought in to replace Dirk Kuyt. In early June, he joined Holland’s trip to Latin America, playing the final ten minutes in the match against Uruguay. How does he rate his chances of winning another cap this week?

“Of course, it’s up to the manager to decide. But perhaps I may be brought in as a substitute when we’re 4-0 or 5-0 ahead. The match could be less easy for us than expected though, which could also be a reason for the manager to field me.”

Defensive play
De Jong expects a serious damage-limitation exercise on the part of San Marino.

“They’ll probably dig in and hope to launch a counter-attack. Which means we have to be wary of underestimating them. By giving all we’ve got and by maintaining a high pace, we’ll be able to create plenty of scoring opportunities. Let’s hope for a few early goals to clinch the match.”

Once again, several key players are going to be missing due to injury. They include Nigel de Jong, Rafael van der Vaart, Arjen Robben and Theo Janssen. But their absence shouldn’t be too much of a problem, says De Jong.

“Of course we’ll miss them, but we still have plenty of quality players left to make up for their absence. They’re quite capable of upholding the quality and style of our play. But imagine what it would be if all players were fit – that would give the manager a huge luxury problem. As it stands, there are enough players who can steer the game.”

Holland will be playing for a 35,000 capacity crowd in Eindhoven. The match has been sold out for weeks. De Jong knows what the fans expect: a double-digit score.

“Yes, that’s what they want. And hopefully we’ll make them happy and score as many goals as we can.”

Discussion

user avatar
Ashleigh Elson 6 September 2011 - 12:29pm

Thanks for your message Jasmin.

Unfortunately, it was indeed just a facebook competition.

Though since they guessed 7-0 and you guessed 7-1, their guesses were technically closer anyways.

Also, perhaps we should have been more specific in the contest blurb, but it seemed obvious that it would be unfair to accept guesses that were made after the game started.

Better luck next time!

A

PS. Since you seem to have seen the contest on Facebook, why didn't you post your guess there?

Cheers,

A

Anonymous 6 September 2011 - 12:56pm

Thanks Asleigh for a prompt reply. I am not on facebook but do follow RNW there to know the latest that you do not post on the main site. My fault that I participated in something that is not meant for the people who follow RNW's main site faithfully. The mistake will not be repeated...
Cheers
Jasmin

jasmin 6 September 2011 - 12:12pm

@Theo Tamis, @RNW facebook: was the San Marino goal contest meant for the facebook visitors only, and not for your website visitors? Even my guess was 7-1 and later when the match was on-12-0....but I don't find my name amongst the winners...This is unfair to the main site visitors, Ashleigh!!!!

jasmin 30 August 2011 - 3:58pm

Why is the audio in Dutch by the English section?

jasmin 30 August 2011 - 3:43pm

My guess-Holland will win-7-1...Best wishes Oranje!!!

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