Now that was the kind of match soccer fans had been waiting for at Euro 2008. And after the utter crap that was France-Romania, we were all due. 3-0 to the Dutch, and while Italians can feel legitimately aggrieved at Van Nistelrooy’s opening goal, there was nothing wrong with the other two the azzurri allowed. The Dutch dominated the match and Donadoni’s Italians simply did not have the mental fortitude to push back after trailing 1-0 or 2-0. Yes, they did force Van Der Sar into some decent saves, but Holland owned the field.
Will the Dutch roll on to the knockout phase now? Probably not, they’re still the Dutch which means they collapse like Eddie Izzard’s proverbial “ill-cooked flan in a cupboard.” Though with facing the (so far) awful-looking French next, the traditionally choke-bound Dutch may find their way out of the Group of Death.