Home » European Championships: France vs Netherlands Round 4 – Get French Football News

European Championships: France vs Netherlands Round 4 – Get French Football News

France may have avoided the obligatory Group of Death at Euro 2024 – with that dubious honour falling to Group B, which contains Spain, Croatia, Italy, and an up against it Albania – but Group D is no cakewalk. 

Poland have improved markedly under Michal Probierz, and Austria look like a solid proposition and more potent attacking threat with Ralf Rangnick at the helm. France remain hot favourites to progress with punters assessing the best bettingoffers UK, but if there is a side to deny them top spot and a potentially more favourable draw, it would appear to be Ronald Koeman’s Netherlands outfit.

Les Bleus leads the all-time head-to-head record against the Oranje but haven’t had things all their own way when encountering the Flying Dutchman at the European Championships Finals. 2024 will represent the fourth such meeting between the sides, and here, we look back at how events unfolded in the three previous encounters.

Euro 1996 Quarter Finals France win 5-4 on Penalties

Having topped a group containing Spain, Bulgaria, and Romania, France faced a quarter-final clash with the Netherlands, who had scraped through their section by edging out Scotland to grab second spot behind England.

Anfield set the stage for what proved to be a tight encounter, with defences coming out on top. No goals in ninety minutes or extra time meant the sides headed to the Kop End for a penalty shootout. Nine of ten players were perfect from the spot, with the odd man out being a 20-year-old Clarence Seedorf, who saw his effort saved by Bernard Lama. Laurant Blanc was the man to send France through to the semis when coolly slotting home into the bottom right corner.

France came close to repeating the feat in playing out a goalless draw with the Czech Republic in their semi-final, but this time came unstuck in the shootout – Reynald Pedros seeing his effort saved by the legs of Petr Kouba in sudden death to send France home. The Czechs went on to lose via Oliver Bierhoff’s golden goal in the final.

Euro 2000 Group D Netherlands 3-2

The Netherlands acted as co-hosts in 2000 and joined France in Group D alongside Euro 96 nemesis the Czech Republic and Denmark. The Netherlands and France each won their opening two games, meaning the Match Day 3 encounter at the Amsterdam Arena was a shootout for first place.

Christophe Dugarry struck first when heading home from a corner in the eighth minute, but the Netherlands swiftly replied through a fine Patrick Kluivert strike. Back came France to take the lead just after the half-hour mark – David Trezeguet turning in Sylvain Wiltord’s 20-yard strike from the edge of the six-yard box. However, that was as good as it got for France, with the Dutch winning it with two second-half strikes in eight minutes – a thunderous Frank de Boer free kick and a smart finish by Boudewijn Zenden.

The Netherlands may have won the battle, but France won the war. The Dutch departed when losing on penalties to Italy in the semi-final, whilst France lifted the trophy courtesy of David Trezeguet’s golden goal strike in the final.

Euro 2008 Group C Netherlands 4-1

The most recent European Championship Finals clash came during France’s disastrous 2008 performance in Austria and Switzerland. Plunged into a fiendishly tough Group C with Italy, the Netherlands and Romania, the tournament quickly turned into a nightmare for Les Bleus.

Managing only a goalless draw with Romania in their opener, France were immediately up against it and promptly fell to pieces on Match Day 2 against the Dutch. Dirk Kuyt headed home following a corner in the ninth minute to give the Netherlands a 1-0 lead at the break. France started the second half well, but Robin Van Persie’s six-yard volley crept over the line to double the Dutch advantage. Theirry Henry’s 71st minute brought hope, but the Netherlands pulled away through a stunning Arjen Robben effort and a wonderful stoppage-time strike from Wesley Sneijder. 

Following that up with a 2-0 defeat to Italy, France finished rock bottom of Group D, whilst the Netherlands were surprisingly dumped out at the Quarter Final stage following an extra-time defeat to Russia.