Are the Oranje in danger of missing the World Cup?


The alarm bells in Amsterdam are ringing after the catastrophic 2-0 defeat against Bulgaria in the recent qualifiying match for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia which has put the Oranje in a position that they might miss a second major tournament in a row which didn’t happened since the mid-1980s.In the aftermath of the catastrophic defeat in Sofia where for 90 minutes the Oranje were uninspired and clueless,somebody had to pay the price,Danny Blind was fired from the job as national team coach and the search for his successor has become a problem for the Royal Dutch Football Association since very few want the job.Hans Van Breukelen which is the technical director of the Oranje wants Louis Van Gaal which is currently out of work is considering a return to the bench to rebuild the Oranje which face another catastrophe,meanwhile the only person who is seriously interested is Ruud Gullit whose last job as coach was in 2011 at Russian club Terek Grozny and who currently works as a studio pundit at BBC’s Match Of The Day,another candidate for the Oranje bench is Danish coach Morten Olsen who for 15 years spent as the coach of the Danish national team and who was suggested by Guus Hiddink which also once led the Oranje,first from 1994 to 1998 and a shorter second and more unsuccessful term from March 2014 to June 2015 where during the qualifiers for the 2016 Euros in France,the Oranje have suffered humiliation after humiliation.Coaches such as Reading’s Jaap Stam,Everton’s Ronald Koeman and former Inter coach Frank de Boer have all refused the hot seated Oranje coaching position,Koeman made it clear that the Royal Dutch FA had its chances to lure him as coach of the Oranje,Stam is making a name for himself at Reading which is fighting for promoton into the Premier League this season and de Boer is fresh of his unsuccessful term as Inter coach which lasted only for three months and it is looking options at coaching in another club.The defeat to Bulgaria and Italy in a friendly match in Amsterdam two weeks ago plunged the Oranje into their lowest FIFA ranking ever,today the Oranje are only 32nd,their lowest in history.The Dutch have become a European footballing power thanks to their own invention of Total Football by Rinus Michels in the late 1960s and early 1970s which propelled Ajax to conquer Europe three times in a row (1971.1972,1973) and which served as a basis for the success of the Oranje in the 1974 and 1978 World Cup where they made two World Cup finals in a row and twice they came home empty handed by losing to the hosts of the tournament and besides successful football and coaching schools,the Oranje was always the bridesmaid and never the bride when it came to major football tournaments.They made it 3 World Cup finals in Munich,Buenos Aires and Johannesburg but always came empty handed.The only major trophy they won was the 1988 Euros in then Western Germany when they beat the Soviet Union 2-0,but prior to that the Oranje were in a serious crisis.The 1980s when it came to the Dutch national team was a period of a major crisis,the Oranje missed three consecutive tournaments in a row (1982 FIFA World Cup in Spain the 1984 Euros in France and the 1986 FIFA World Cup in Mexico) until Michels returned and led the Oranje with a generation which consisted of Gullit,Rijkaard and Van Basten to conquer Europe for the first and only time to date.The Oranje have been realatively successful for the last two World Cup tournaments but again they fell short-in Johannesburg Andres Iniesta was the man which gave Spain its first World Cup title and in the last World Cup in Brazil penalty shootouts were fatal in the semifinal against Messi’s Argentina which if the Oranje were successful they would have their rematch of the final in Munich against Germany.But the memories from Brazil were the Oranje schooled Spain in the first match of the group,won a tough but a memorable match against Australia and won the bronze against the hosts of the tournament have faded.Fast forward three years later and the Oranje find themselves on the brink of collapse and another failure.In the qualifying round for the 2016 Euros the Oranje got humiliated twice by Vikings of Iceland,twice by the Czechs and suffered a humiliating 3-0 defeat against Turkey and with that the Oranje missed its first Euros since 1984 when France was also the host of the tournament.Now with an unexpected and catastrophic defeat against Bulgaria in Sofia the looming question is:are the Oranje in danger of missing their second consecutive tournament,missing the Euros sparked a crisis in Amsterdam,but after the defeat in Sofia the alarm bells are ringing and if things aren’t turned around soon the Oranje might not see Moscow next summer.


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