WC Qual - UEFA
September 7, 2012
Netherlands v Turkey: Preview
Team Stat Comparison
|Goals for *||3.0||1.0|
|Goals against *||0.0||1.7|
|Last 5 home||W-W-W-W||D-L-W|
|Last 5 away||W-W||W-L-L|
|* Goals per match - home matches for home club and away matches for away club|
|Stats: Netherlands | Turkey|
|9/6||A: Estonia||9/6||H: Andorra|
|9/10||A: Andorra||9/10||A: Romania|
|10/11||H: Hungary||10/11||A: Estonia|
|10/15||A: Turkey||10/15||H: Netherlands|
Arda Turan is hoping Turkey can steal a march on Group D rivals Holland tomorrow night with victory in Amsterdam.
The two sides appear set to battle it out for a direct place in Brazil in two years' time with Andorra, Estonia, Hungary and Romania making up the rest of the pool.
Attacking midfielder Turan has made a fine start to the season with Atletico Madrid - playing a key role as the Rojiblancos swept aside Chelsea 4-1 in the Super Cup last Friday - and is hoping to maintain that momentum on the international stage.
He said: "Our intent against Holland is clear: we want to go home with a victory. We are not going for a draw.
"Holland is our biggest competitor in the group.
"And it would be nice if we're able to steal some points from the group favourites in the first game. Hopefully everything goes as we have in mind.''
Turkey could be catching the Dutch at the right time with new coach Louis van Gaal - back for a second spell - looking to overhaul a squad which flopped so spectacularly at Euro 2012 when they failed to claim a single point from three pool matches.
"This is an opportunity for us,'' Turan added in remarks reported by Voetbal International.
"The situation with Oranje is similar to ours.
"They too are in a transitional phase and must build a new team.
"It should be an exciting game that will probably be decided on fitness and condition. As the season has just begun, not everyone will be 100% fit.''
Despite the changes in personnel Van Gaal has been pleased with the way the build-up has gone as Holland look to bounce back from a 4-2 friendly defeat to Belgium which followed their disappointing summer in Poland and Ukraine.
"I'm sitting here with confidence,'' he said at a press conference.
"I'm pleased with how it is going, in particular how the players have trained. I just hope we can show it tomorrow.''
Explaining his decision to omit the likes of Nigel de Jong and Rafael van der Vaart from his squad, Van Gaal added: "The old group lost four in a row. There is no guarantee of success.''
And he will employ a new 4-3-3 system tomorrow with just one holding midfielder, as opposed to the two used by predecessor Bert van Marwijk.
"The KNVB (Dutch Football Association) gave me a clear mission to play 'Dutch School' football and with the quality of this squad that must be possible,'' said Van Gaal, who looks set to leave Robin Van Persie on the bench with Schalke's Klaas Jan Huntelaar leading the attack.
Van Persie has been in scintillating form since swapping Arsenal for Manchester United over the summer but Van Gaal prefers Huntelaar, who has netted in each of the Royal Blues' opening two Bundesliga games.
However, he added: "That can change after one match because the team is more important than 11 Huntelaars or 11 Van Persies.
"The competition [between players] is important. When a team already is set in stone, you lose that aspect.''