Dutch boss Van Marwijk quits post after early European Championship exit



By Adam Higgins
Chief Football Editor



Van Marwijk (pictured) retired from his playing career in 1988 and has been a coach for twenty-two years


Netherlands head coach Bert van Marwijk has resigned with immediate effect following his side's disastrous Euro 2012 experience.

The 60-year-old refused to answer questions about his future last week but his departure has now been confirmed by the Dutch Football Association. His side were beaten in all three of their matches in the tournament and finished bottom of Group B in Poland and Ukraine. However, the memorable moment was when Van Marwijk led the Netherlands to the 2010 World Cup Final in which they were beaten 1-0 by Spain in extra time at Soccer City in Johannesburg, South Africa.  

Van Marwijk stated after ending his tenure with Holland: "I have severe doubts, but have decided to take this step anyway." While, the head of the KNVB (the Dutch FA), Bert van Oostveen said: "The KNVB are grateful to Van Marwijk. I personally had a very good feeling about our co-operation. Of course it is sad to part early, but we must be realistic."

The Netherlands had won nine of their ten qualifying matches for Euro 2012 rising to the top of the FIFA world rankings in August 2011 including an 11-0 thrashing of San Marino last September in Eindhoven. But drawn in the "Group of Death" with Denmark and eventual semi-finalists Germany and Portugal, they lost three consecutive competitive games for the first time in their history.

A disappointing 1-0 defeat in their opener with Denmark was swiftly followed by a 2-1 loss to Germany followed by a damaging reverse against Portugal also by a 2-1 scoreline.

The performances were in stark contrast to their vibrant displays at the 2010 World Cup, in which the Dutch took maximum points during the group stages in what was Van Marwijk's first tournament as coach.

The Dutch went on to reach the final although Van Marwijk's negative tactics in a bad-tempered game against the Spanish led to criticism from the media and other football icons including Dutch legend Johann Cruyff.

Van Marwijk, who has previously coached Feyenoord and Borussia Dortmund, had taken over from Marco van Basten in 2008 signing an initial contract which lasted until the summer of 2011 before extending his stay further until 2016.

He won 34 of his 52 matches in charge of Holland, drawing ten and losing eight with a win percentage of 65%. His first match in charge was a 1-1 draw against Russia in a friendly match during August 2008 in Moscow.

The Netherlands' next match is on 15th August when they face Belgium in an international friendly before starting their 2014 World Cup qualifying campaign against Turkey in September.


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