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Dutch jeopardise their Euro 2016 qualification

The Netherlands left needing three wins from their last three matches after suffering shock 0-1 loss to Iceland at home

Amsterdam: Wesley Sneijder says the Netherlands now need to win their final three qualifiers or miss out in the European Championships after Thursday’s surprise home loss to Iceland.

Netherlands’ Wesley Sneijder reacts during their Euro 2016 qualifier against Iceland at Amsterdam ArenA on Thursday. PIC/AFP
Netherlands’ Wesley Sneijder reacts during their Euro 2016 qualifier against Iceland at Amsterdam ArenA on Thursday. PIC/AFP

The experienced midfielder also believes Bruno Martins Indi’s sending off in the first half changed the course of the Group A qualifier.

The Oranje defender was shown a straight red in the 33rd minute following a strong challenge on Iceland’s Kolbeinn Sigthorsson.

Penalty woe
Holland then gave away a penalty after the re-start which Gylfi Sigurdsson converted to hand Iceland a shock upset in Amsterdam.

“There was nothing to worry about until that red card,” Sneijder said to www.telegraaf.nl. “We also gave a penalty away. It is upsetting.

“They changed nothing in their playing style but for us to be down to 10 men it was very hard. It got worse when we conceded the penalty.

“We should have never put ourselves in that position.”

Sneijder had hoped for a better outcome at the Amsterdam ArenA in what was Danny Blind’s first game in charge of the Oranje having replaced Guus Hiddink in July.

Thursday’s reverse means Holland have lost ground in their battle to qualify for Euro 2016, leaving them in third place, eight points adrift of leaders Iceland and six behind the Czech Republic with three games remaining.

Holland travel to Konya on Sunday to face Turkey — who are also competing for third spot and are just one point behind the Dutch — before finishing their qualifying campaign against Kazakhstan and the Czechs.

“We need to win our last three games because if we don’t, we will not go to France,” Sneijder said.

Sneijder is hopeful that captain Arjen Robben will recover in time for Sunday’s qualifier. The Bayern Munich winger suffered what appeared to be a groin injury 25 minutes into Thursday’s game and had to be replaced. “Hopefully Robben will be fit for the Turkey game,” Sneijder said. “If we lose Robben, we lose a lot of options in attack.”

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