Midfielder says the Netherlands' team spirit will ensure they lord over football's showpiece event this time around ahead of Last 16 clash with Mexico today
Fortaleza: Netherlands star Wesley Sneijder believes his side can win the World Cup this year due to its great team spirit. The Oranje have already exceeded their pre-tournament expectations by finishing top of Group B with wins over Spain, Chile and Australia and face Mexico in the second round today.
After finishing as runners-up in the tournament four years ago, Sneijder believes his team can go on and win the summer showpiece for the first time.
"When I start a tournament, I always want to win it," he said in an interview on Fifa's official website. "Four years ago, for example, it was a tough challenge for us but everything in the group was good and the whole process worked well for us.
"But we played the final and we lost. That was one of the toughest moments of my career so far. But the beautiful thing about football is that you always have the chance to gain a bit of revenge, and here we are four years later.
"And why can't we win it this time? I think we have a great team and a great spirit, so we have to go for it."
The Galatasaray player also praised the mood in the Oranje camp, as well as the work of coach Louis van Gaal.
"When you win, the atmosphere is always fantastic. We were in a very tough group and before the tournament a lot of people were saying we didn't stand much of a chance of progressing. But we always believed and (just before the World Cup) we started to play a new system.
"The coach stands over the team and creates the way we play. If you barely give any chances away against Spain, Chile and Australia, well, that's a big compliment, first of all to the manager because he's the one who makes us play like this, but also for the players because we're the ones who execute it.
"Everyone knows what's expected, everyone knows what to do. And we always know that on the counter-attack, we're very dangerous."
Sneijder's teammate Arjen Robben, meanwhile, has insisted that he is not the only player who could make the difference for Louis van Gaal's men.
The 30-year-old has been a key figure in his country's impressive World Cup campaign so far, scoring three goals and setting up one more.
"I don't have the feeling that the team is dependent on me. Yes, our opponents are giving me less space than before," the Bayern star was quoted as saying by NUsport.