After yesterdays loss to the Germans the Dutch put themselves in a back against the wall situation where they no longer entirely control their own fate. That being said a late goal by Portugal against the Danes kept Holland’s hope alive in these European Championships and the late goal by Robin van Persie may have put the belief back into the Dutch side that they have what it takes to score goals against top teams in this tournament.
As it stands Germany has 6 points, Denmark and Portugal sit with 3 a piece and the Dutch have 0 after two matches. It is possible that Germany finish with 9 points and the other three teams finish with 3 if the Germans defeat the Danes (which they are expected to) and the Dutch defeat the Portuguese. This would put Holland into a 3 way tie for 2nd place.
The first tiebreaker is head to head matches and each team will be 1-1 against the others so then it would go to superior goal difference in the matches among the 3 teams in question. Denmark is done the games between the teams in question, which puts them at a 0 goal differential. Portugal is currently at +1, while Holland is at -1. This means that if Holland wins the game against Portugal by 2 goals they will be a +1, while Portugal will be a -1, which means the Dutch would advance if Denmark does not get a point against Germany.
If the Dutch only defeat Portugal by 1 goal then the next tie breaker comes into affect which is the higher number of goals in the games among the teams in question. As it stands Denmark has 3 goals in 2 games, Portugal has 3 goals in 1 game and Holland has 0 goals in 1 game. Therefore there is no way Holland can advance if they defeat Portugal by only 1 goal.
So the one scenario stands for the Dutch to advance past the group stage at Euro 2012. Defeat Portugal by 2 or more goals and hope that the Germans can field their best lineup to defeat the Danes.
Will Germany Field Their Best Lineup?
This brings us to the next questions, which is if the Dutch do pull off the big win, will their German neighbours help them out with their own win.
Luckily for Holland, the way the group sits now, Germany has not yet guaranteed themselves a spot in the next round so it would be surprising if they rest any top players. If they rest their players and lose to Denmark and Portugal beats Holland then those 3 teams will each have 6 points. In fact a 1 goal loss to Denmark, coupled with a Portugal win would almost certainly advance Denmark and Portugal based on the tie breaking procedures.
The only scenario where Germany loses to Denmark and still advances with a Portugal win over Holland is if Denmark wins by a 4-3 or higher goal count, which is next to impossible. So basically if Germany loses and Portugal wins, Germany will be out.
This is great for Holland because it means Germany will not take this game with Denmark lightly. And if they play their best game Germany should pull out a win over an inferior Danish side. This will likely leave Hollands destiny in their own hands. Win by 2 goals or more against Portugal and there is a good chance the Dutch will advance.
Bet On Holland Qualifying
5Dimes.eu currently has the odds for Holland to qualify from the group stage at +615. A Germany win over Denmark currently has odds of -138, while a Dutch win currently has odds of +166, but there is no line yet available for Holland winning by 2.
I actually like Hollands chances of qualifying out of this group having lost their first two matches. The Dutch have the quality to score goals in bunches and to be honest they have had a lot of chances that they would normally convert in their first two matches. If they can just find the back of the net early in the Portugal game they may be ready to break out.
Written by: Niko de Jonge