Euro 2012 teams

Team Profile: Netherlands

A look back at the key points of Netherlands' history in the Euros.

Jon Carter

Marco van Basten lifts the trophy for Netherlands in 1988

Overall record at finals: Played 32, Won 17, Drawn 8, Lost 7.

Best performance: Champions in 1988.

Most appearances at finals: Edwin van der Sar (1996, 2000, 2004, 2008) - 16.

Most goals at finals: Patrick Kluivert (2000); Marco van Basten (1988) - 5

European Championship high: Marco van Basten's stunning volley which sunk the USSR side to take Rinus Michels' men to glory in 1988.

European Championship low: At the height of Total Football in 1972, the Dutch failed to reach the final tournament as they were unable to beat Yugoslavia who finished top of their group.

European Championship legend: Marco van Basten, who scored five in 1988, is the all-time top scorer for Netherlands with 16 in qualifying and the final tournament. The AC Milan legend was named Europe's best player three times during his career although he could not recreate his success as a manager in a four-year stint in charge of the national team between 2004-2008.

The story so far: Unable to get into the tournament pre-1976, despite the arrival of Total Football and Johan Cruyff at the turn of the decade, the Oranje finished third on their debut. Netherlands were eliminated in extra time by Czechoslovakia and did not make another impression until 1988 when Rinus Michels - and the likes of Marco van Basten, Frank Rijkaard and Ronald Koeman - led them to glory. Ever-presents to at least the quarter-final stage ever since, the Dutch have not looked back although a run of a run of five shoot-out exits in six major tournaments between 1992-2000 suggested a weak spot. A run to the 2010 World Cup final has Netherlands firmly back among the favourites for the Euros.

Qualification: Netherlands blew the likes of Hungary and Finland in Group E out of the water as they recorded nine straight wins before blotting their copybook with a 3-2 final-day defeat by runners-up Sweden. With 27 goals from their 10 games, they were the highest scorers in qualifying and even recorded a huge 11-0 win over lowly San Marino in Eindhoven. Striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar also finished top of the scoring charts for the group stages as he bagged 12 goals in his eight matches. "We have won nine in a row and advanced as group winners," coach Bert Van Marwijk said after sealing progress against Moldova. "Still, the feeling in the dressing room was one of disappointment. There was champagne, but no one drank it. I think that is a positive thing."

Qualifying record: P10, W9, D0, L1, F37, A8, Pts27.

Most appearances: Gregory van der Wiel, Joris Mathijsen (10).

Top goalscorer: Klaas-Jan Huntelaar (12).


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