By Temisan Amoye
Impressive right-back Denzel Dumfries scored his second goal in as many games at Euro 2020, as the Netherlands defeated Austria 2-0 to seal qualification for the knock-out stages.
The Oranje sailed through Group C as winners, with a spare game, as Barcelona-bound forward Memphis Depay put the Netherlands 1-0 up with an early penalty in the 11th minute after Austrian captain Alaba tripped De Vrij in the 18-yard box.
Jewish referee Orel Grinfeld made a VAR check to award the penalty, initially ignoring calls for one.
Frank de Boer’s side displayed their class against a weaker poor side and could have been two goals ahead when Depay blew a glorious chance to put the Netherlands 2-0 up in the 40th minute after being set up by Weghorst.
The Netherlands dominated proceedings and could have added another goal but for a great Bachman save from a point-blank range De Vrij header, and De Ligt failing to convert the rebound.
The Oranje went 2-0 up in the 67th minute with PSV forward, Donyell Marlen sprinting onto a Depay flick and selflessly setting up Dumfries who tucked in despite Bachman getting hands to it.
Dumfries has emerged as an attacking for The Netherlands and could have added more to his tally but for some questionable misses in their Group C opener against Ukraine. The full-back has certainly put European clubs on alert with his performance so far.
The Austrian high line was caught out in the build-up to the goal, with calls for offside, and Bachman getting booked in the process for dissent.
A powerful Alaba strike in the 81st minute had Stekelenburg scrambling, with the Dutch keeper relieved to see it flash wide of his goal. Forward Onisiwo blew a great chance to pull one back for the Austrians in the 84th minute after powering a header directly at Stekelenburg.
Dutch coach De Boer speaking after the game said: “I think there are still a lot of things we can improve and we showed some different qualities today.
“Defensively we were much better than against Ukraine. On the ball we could have done better today but overall it was a really decent performance today and that’s given me a lot confidence for the next games.
“I don’t want to talk about favourites. We have to do our best and I know at our best we can beat everybody.
“But I think other teams are thinking the same, so let’s go from game to game, and then we will see where it ends.
The result seals qualification for the Netherlands and leaves second place open to whoever emerges victorious when Austria squares 0ff against Ukraine on Monday.