(EFE) – A double by the FC Barcelona player Memphis Depay and the goals of Georginio Wijnaldum and Cody Gakpo gave Louis van Gaal the first victory of his third stage as coach of the Netherlands (4-0), against a Montenegro that falls off the qualification for Qatar 2022.
Depay was the most decisive player in the “Clockwork Orange” despite the strong marking imposed by Miodrag Radulovic’s men. His passes to the left and right while on the edge of the area and his two goals, one of them from a penalty, opened the Montenegrin can. The Barcelona forward starred in the color note of the match when, in the final minutes, he allowed himself to take a “selfie” with a spontaneous young man who had taken to the field.
With Saturday’s results, Turkey leads Group G in the qualification for the Qatar 2022 World Cup with 11 points, followed by the Netherlands and Norway, both with 10 points, and Montenegro lags behind with 7 points.
Van Gaal needed victory after the draw against Norway three days ago. The coach kept it 4-3-3, rested Virgil van Dijk, replaced Matthijs de Ligt and introduced Feyenoord left-back Tyrell Malacia. From midfield onwards he kept the same players, with Frenkie de Jong as the organizer of the game and Depay at the top.
Montenegro coach Miodrag Radulovic, who had center forward Stevan Jovetic dismissed due to injury, also went 4-4-2, but on the field his midfielders served as second defensive line.
The beginning of the match fulfilled the planned script, with the Netherlands maintaining possession and Montenegro crouching behind, leaving spaces, without rushing to play the counterattack in the few minutes he had the ball.
Van Gaal’s men went from less to more. The combinations between Frenkie de Jong, Depay and Klaassen came to be produced within the area, bringing the consequent danger to the visiting goal, although sometimes the final shot was missing. On the right wing, Steven Berghuis entered again and again, with Inter Milan full-back Denzel Dumfries overflowing whenever he could.
The first goal of the “Oranje” could have been perfectly Klaassen. The Ajax midfielder sent her too high on one clear occasion, when she was left alone with the ball on the crescent of the area, and then a header from her crashed the ball off the crossbar. Depay then left a couple of good balls for Cody Gakpo that he did not take advantage of.
The “Clockwork Orange” hammer ended toppling the Montenegrin wall in the 38th minute thanks to a clear grab from Dusan Lagator to Depay in the area. The Spanish referee Jesús Gil Manzano pointed out the penalty and the FC Barcelona striker himself was in charge of executing it with a clean shot to the right, deceiving the goalkeeper.
After the break, Radulovic sat Atletico Madrid defender Stefan Savic on the bench, who had seen a yellow, and replaced Marko Simic. The match continued the dynamics of the first half, with Berghuis testing the Montenegro goalkeeper with long shots.
Montenegro’s only chances in the second half were due to two blunders by the home defense. The first mistake was made by the debutant Malacia, impeccable until then, and the second by Matthijs de Ligt and Stefan de Vrij. Both were wasted by Montenegrin striker Stefan Mugosa, as the first sent her to the moon, being alone in front of the goalkeeper, and the second was saved by Bijlow.
The ghosts of the draw faded away for Van Gaal’s men in 62. The ball bounced into Gakpo’s boots and Gakpo, with his back turned, gave it to Depay, who beat goalkeeper Sarkic by the short post.
The rest of the match ended up being a Dutch festival. The third, the work of Cody Gakpo, was a great goal from outside the area thanks to a shot worth studying. The fourth was signed by Wijnaldum, although part of the credit went to Berghuis’ excellent attendance.