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Feeble Romanians downed by Dutch
by Ridge Mahoney, June 18th, 2008 7AM
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[NETHERLANDS-ROMANIA REPORT CARD] Italy's win over France rendered the result moot in any case, yet while Romania's hopes of advancement were still flickering, it seldom raised its game enough to trouble an under-strength yet confident Netherlands and went down, 2-0. Soccer America's Ridge Mahoney grades the players.

[NETHERLANDS-ROMANIA REPORT CARD] Italy's win over France rendered the result moot in any case, yet while Romania's hopes of advancement were still flickering, it seldom raised its game enough to trouble an under-strength yet confident Netherlands and went down, 2-0.

Coach Marco van Basten sat down nine players who'd started against Italy and France yet still the Netherlands controlled most of the play. Klaas Jan Huntelaar scored nine minutes into the second half to break open a goalless game, and Robin Van Persie drove a late clincher into the roof of the net to ensure that the Netherlands won Group C with a perfect 3-0 record and a goal difference of plus-8 (nine scored -- a European Championship record for group play -- and one conceded).

Soccer America's Ridge Mahoney grades the players.

Netherlands Player Ratings
GRADE PLAYER (CLUB) GP/G
5 Maarten Stecklenberg
(Ajax) 12/0
5 Khalid Boulahrouz (Sevilla) 25/0
6 Wilfred Bouma (Aston Villa) 35/2
6 John Heitinga (Ajax) 38/5
5 Tim de Cler (Feyenoord) 16/0
7 Orlando Engelaar (Twente) 9/0
6 Demy de Zeeuw (AZ) 16/0
7 Ibrahim Afellay (PSV) 7/0
4 Arjen Robben (Real Madrid) 27/8
5 Robin van Persie (Arsenal) 27/9
5 Klaas Jan Huntelaar (Ajax) 13/8
Subs:
5 Dirk Kuyt (Liverpool) 41/8
5 Mario Melchiot (Wigan) 22/0
4 Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink (Celtic) 17/3

Romania Player Ratings
GRADE PLAYER (CLUB) GP/G
6 Bogdan Lobont (Dinamo Bucharest) 66/0
4 Razvan Rat (Shakhtar Donetsk) 51/1
4 Sorin Ghionea (Steaua Bucharest) 11/1
5 Gabriel Tamas (Auxerre) 35/2
4 Cosmin Contra (Getafe) 66/7
4 Cristian Chivu (Inter Milan) 62/3
3 Paul Codrea (Siena) 36/13
3 Razvan Cocis (Lok. Moscow) 24/1
3 Marius Niculae (Auxerre) 32/13
4 Adrian Mutu (Fiorentina) 64//29
4 Banel Nicolita (Steaua Bucharest) 23/1
Subs
5 Florentin Petre (CSKA Sofia) 51/6
5 Nicolae Dica (Steaua Bucharest) 28/8
4 Daniel Niculae (Inverness) 33/13

(1=low; 5=average; 10=high)



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