Should the Dutch play a weaker team against Romania?


17th, June 2008

Holland can play part in France & Italy’s demise. But should they?
If Romania beat Holland this evening, France and Italy will go out of Euro 2008.
That’s the simple equation.
Normally, I’d favour the Dutch to beat the Romanians, but the thing is, they really don’t need to. Marco van Basten’s side are already guaranteed a place in the quarter finals, thanks to fine wins against the two World Cup 2006 finalists. Why should Van Basten risk his best players picking up an injury or a card in a match where the result doesn’t count; that’s not to say the result doesn’t matter, as a defeat even in a “meaningless” match is never good for morale.

Both the French and Italian camps are shitting bricks that Holland will play a weakened team against Romania. The Italians, particularly, are worried about a repeat of Euro 2004, when Denmark and Sweden drew their final group game 2-2 the only result that

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