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Friday, February 3, 2023

2022 FIFA World Cup: Netherlands strike late to beat Senegal 2-0 in opener (Video)

Late goals from Cody Gakpo and Davy Klaassen gave the Netherlands a 2-0 win over Senegal in their World Cup return at the Al Thumama Stadium on Monday.

The Oranje had produced a lacklustre performance in their first World Cup match since the 2014 tournament in Brazil, but secured all three points.

Gakpo broke the deadlock with just six minutes remaining on the clock when he raced into the box and met Frenkie de Jong’s cross with a header.

In spite of his team’s inconsistency, Louis van Gaal’s side scored a second goal deep into stoppage time with Klaassen slotting home.

 

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Senegal, meanwhile, looked pedestrian in attack as they badly missed the threat of Mane.

Senegal suffered a major blow last week when star Sadio Mane was ruled out for the World Cup with a leg injury.

The Oranje kicked off their first game on the biggest stage since missing out on qualification for Russia 2018.

In an open start, that eagerness saw the Dutch created the first opportunity, with midfielder De Jong dallying in front of goal and being prevented from getting a shot away on the break.

Steven Berghuis then fired an effort over the crossbar just over five minutes before the break, with Youssouf Sabaly mustering the only shot on target of the first half in response.

Watch the video of the match below;

Van Gaal turned to Memphis Depay, who had been deemed not fit enough to start, with the need for a game-changing spark around the hour mark.

It was Gakpo who came up with the elusive opening goal with time running out, though, nipping in ahead of Mendy to meet De Jong’s delivery and nod beyond the Senegal keeper

Klaassen then sealed the win deep into stoppage time, applying a simple finish after Mendy could only palm Depay’s tame shot into his path.

What’s next?

Senegal will be playing against Hosts Qatar on Friday 25 November at 14:00, while the Netherlands will face Ecuador on the same at 17:00.

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