Dutch Disease 3
June 13, 2012
I hereby have the pleasure of saying: I knew it! The two holding midfielders—one of whom, Van Bommel, is just lazy these days, on top of being mean—did not work. Schweinsteiger and Khedira and Özil tore them apart in the first half. Schweinsteiger was great, but he had so much time and space that it was hard not to have a great game. De Jong and Van Bommel were always caught in the middle, between the three German midfielders and their own defense. If they pressed high, the Germans would have space behind them, and Khedira had a few forward runs to see if they’d track him.
June 09, 2012
It is hard to think of the two more cynical and destructive players than the Netherlands’ Van Bommel and De Jong, who acquired dubious eternal fame for the karate kick into the chest of Xabi Alonso. Apart from their brutality, they’ve played as two holding midfielders, which slowed down transition and isolated Van Persie. That is why Sneijder was their top scorer in the World Cup. Both of them are playing today, which is to say that we can expect the same ugliness as in the World Cup. It will be interesting to see how Germany will respond to the Dutch bullying.