Extra strikers won't help Dutch goal search against Gibraltar-coach

·2-min read
World Cup Qualifiers Europe - Group G - Turkey v Netherlands

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - Putting more strikers into the starting line-up will not necessarily lead to a goal deluge against tiny Gibraltar in World Cup qualification, Netherlands coach Frank de Boer warned on the eve of Tuesday's clash.

However, he did insist that any less than a 5-0 away win in their Group G match would not be satisfactory.

"Putting in more attackers doesn't necessarily make it any easier, because it makes the spaces even smaller for us," he told a news conference.

"But if your two full backs are operating essentially only offensively, then they can also be classified as attackers. In today's football you have to have a lot of movement and combinations."

The Dutch started their bid to qualify for next year's finals in Qatar with a surprise 4-2 loss in Turkey last Wednesday but got their first points on Saturday when they beat Latvia 2-0 in Amsterdam, although not to the coach’s satisfaction.

"In the end, that 2-0 against Latvia was not a good result, if you consider all the chances we created. We should have scored at least seven goals," he said.

"If things are more difficult we might have to settle for less. Norway won in Gibraltar with three goals and Gibraltar lost 4-1 at Montenegro, but we hope to score more goals.

"For that we have to keep the tempo high and not let them catch their breath. How many goals? At least five, but preferably more."

But De Boer was wary of both the pitch and the opponent.

"I don't think you need to motivate Gibraltar for a match against the Netherlands. They have looked forward to it for a long time and will be 300% motivated.

"It is also not the best pitch, let that be clear," added the coach. "But it is also not so bad that good football is impossible."

(Writing by Mark Gleeson in Cape Town; Editing by Christian Radnedge)