Dutch ensure a rapturous send-off
Goalscorer Arjen Robben in action against Wales
Netherlands 2-0 Wales
Arjen Robben and Wesley Sneijder were on target as the Dutch prevailed in their final friendly before they head to their Lucerne finals base for UEFA EURO 2008™ on Tuesday.
Deploying the same starting lineup as they did against Denmark last Thursday, the Dutch looked calm from the off, and began to exert serious pressure from the 15th minute. It was no surprise when they opened the scoring after 35 minutes, with Robben pouncing on a misplaced header from Carl Robinson on the halfway line and racing past three defenders to beat Wayne Hennessey.
That scoreline barely did the Netherlands' first-half efforts justice, but they were to be no less dominant after the break, with Dirk Kuyt, Nigel de Jong, Mario Melchiot and Tim de Cler all coming on as substitutes. Rafael van der Vaart, Orlando Engelaar and Sneijder all missed the target before the latter scored in the 54th minute with a free-kick from 18 metres.
Van der Sar honoured
The Dutch gave the 48,500 fans at the De Kuip Stadium in Rotterdam plenty of reasons for confidence ahead of their finals opener against Italy in Berne on 9 June, while Edwin van der Sar was given two bouquets by Oranje predecessor Hans van Breukelen before the game to celebrate making his 125th appearance for his country. He celebrated by denying Craig Bellamy a late goal for Wales.
Netherlands: Van der Sar, Ooijer, Heitinga (Melchiot 46), Mathijsen (Vennegoor of Hesselink 80), Van Bronckhorst (De Cler 46), Van der Vaart (Afellay 67), De Zeeuw (De Jong 46), Sneijder, Engelaar (Kuyt 46), Robben, Van Nistelrooy.
Wales: Hennessey, Ricketts (Crofts 78), Williams, Morgan, Nyatanga, Gunter, Robinson (Collison 46), Koumas (Vokes 73), Edwards (Evans 57), Eastwood (Bellamy 57), Ledley (Eardley 89).