For the first time in 16 years, the Netherlands defeated Germany, as goals by Virgil van Dijk, Memphis Depay and Georginio Wijnaldum led the Dutch national team to a 3-0 victory in a UEFA Nations League matchup this past Saturday. This also marks the first time the Dutch have ever beat Germany by a three-goal margin.
The Netherlands’ last victory against the Germans dates back to November 20th, 2002, when the Dutch claimed a 3-1 victory in an international friendly. To find the last time the Dutch notched a competitive victory over Germany, you have to go all the way back to 1992, when they defeated the Germans 3-1 in the group stage of the UEFA Euro 1992 tournament.
This is a big victory for the Netherlands, who have struggled in competitive play over the last few years. Just six years after their second place finish at the 2010 FIFA World Cup, and only two years after their third place finish at the 2014 World Cup, the Dutch failed to qualify for the UEFA Euro 2016 tournament. This marked the first time they had failed to qualify for the European Championship since 1984. Following a poor qualifying campaign, they also failed to qualify for the 2018 FIFA World Cup. This victory could help rejuvenate the Dutch football team, who are desperately looking to recapture success they have seen in the past.
Goal-scorers Memphis Depay and Virgil Van Dijk are among those that could help reinstate the Netherlands as a powerhouse in international football. Despite a disappointing spell at Manchester United, Depay has improved his form at French side Lyon. Depay’s goal-scoring performance showed Dutch fans the young winger’s potential, which could lead to success in the future. Van Dijk could also be instrumental to the future of Dutch football. The Liverpool defender has proven to be the key to the Dutch defense, and his knack for scoring headers will certainly only help the Dutch going forward.