Sunday, December 5, 2021

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Netherlands down Norway to qualify for World Cup

The Netherlands booked their place at the 2022 World Cup finals in Qatar with a 2-0 victory against Norway, who missed out on next year’s tournament as a result.

Late goals from Tottenham Hotspur’s Steven Bergwijn and Barcelona’s Memphis Depay ensured the Dutch claimed top spot in Group G.

The Dutch regain some pride after missing out on the 2018 World Cup following an underwhelming qualification campaign.

For Norway, they miss the services of injured striker Erling Braut Haaland, who scored in the 1-1 draw between these sides in Oslo in September.

The visitors did defend well though, but as soon as Bergwijn’s rising shot hit the net with six minutes to go – with rivals for second place Turkey winning 2-1 in Montenegro – their challenge was over.

Over-commitment in the closing stages for a corner then allowed the Dutch to break, with Bergwijn unselfishly setting up Depay to end the contest.

The result represents a measure of success for manager Louis van Gaal, who led the Dutch to a third-place finish at the 2014 World Cup in his second spell as national boss.

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