Porto Alegre (Brazil): The Netherlands beat Australia Wednesday in Porto Alegre to qualify for the second round of the World Cup, after Chile beat Spain 2-0. But coach Louis van Gaal and his players were not completely satisfied.
The Netherlands bounced back from a 2-1 deficit in the second half to win 3-2. After 45 minutes the score was 1-1, Xinhua reports.
"I knew beforehand that Australia would be a tough match," Dutch coach Van Gaal said. "These guys play with passion and conviction. In the first half we had a lot of problems in ball possession."
The Dutch started with a 5-3-2 system, which was successful in the first Group B match against Spain (5-1), but in the second half Van Gaal opted for a 4-3-3 system, with Memphis Depay as left winger. "We know we can play that system" , he said. "I changed it because I hoped we could put more pressure on them and to come back in the match. That` s what happened."
"I do not know if it was up to the new system or to the fact that my players got more confidence," Van Gaal added. "But with three strikers it went a lot better. We will have to discuss if we continue like this."
Man of the Match Arjen Robben, who put the Netherlands in front in the 20th minute, agreed with his coach. "In ball possession almost everything went wrong," said Robben. "We were not able to come into the match like that. The first half was very poor."
According to Wesley Sneijder the most important thing was the win. "We are here at the World Cup" , he said. "We play every five days and our opponents analyze us and find a way to fight us. Australia did a very good job and deserves all the credits. They disrupted our build-up."
Memphis Depay, who stepped on as a replacement for injured Bruno Martins Indi just before half-time, had a great impact with assisting Robin van Persie` s 2-2 and producing the winning goal in the 68th minute. At age 20 Memphis Depay became the youngest Dutch goal scorer in World Cup history.
"This is what I dreamt of," Depay stated. "I feel wonderful, I could not be happier. I wasn` t nervous. Why would I? I knew what I had to do."