Sneijder: “We will take special care not to lose the ball.”

The Dutch are known for expressing strong opinions about football or anything else. Whether it be in their native Dutch, English or in this case, Spanish, to Marca.com in Madrid. Former Real Madrid man, Wesley Sneijder, along with former Barcelona man, Giovanni van Bronckhorst, provided insights ahead of the final against Spain. Long-time Oranje star, Ruud Van Nistelrooy, and the legendary Dutch master from the 1970s, Johann Cruyff, weighed in with their opinions about the key factors in the final. Cruyff spent many years playing and managing in Spain for FC Barcelona.

Wesley Sneijder: “We will take special care not to lose the ball in the midfield against Spain because it would be fatal.”

Tendremos un cuidado especial de no perder el balón en el mediocampo contra España porque podría ser fatal. Para la posesión del balón, tendremos que ser audaces y valientes… Si creamos oportunidades de anotar, tenemos muchas posibilidades de ganar… No dejaremos que jueguen los espacios o demasiado alto: sería una bendición para ellos“.

“We will take special care not to lose the ball in the midfield against Spain because it would be fatal. For the possession of the ball, we have to be daring and brave… If we create goal-scoring opportunities, we have great possibilities to win… We won’t let them play in space or too high. It would be a blessing for them.”

Giovanni van Bronckhorst scored one of the best goals of the entire tournament against Uruguay

Giovanni van Bronckhorst scored one of the best goals of the entire tournament against Uruguay

Giovanni van Bronckhorst: “It would be fantastic to receive the trophy from Nelson Mandela.”

Sería fantástico recibir la Copa de Nelson Mandela. Espero verlo, sería fantástico. Estuve dos veces con él y fue algo muy especial. Sería bonito recibir la Copa de él“.

“It would be fantastic to receive the trophy from Nelson Mandela. I hope to see him. It would be fantastic. I was with him twice and it was something very special. It would be great to receive the Cup from him.”

Ruud Van Nistelrooy: “Spain will hold the ball but Robben and Sneijder can kill them on the counter.”

España tendrá el balón, pero Robben y Sneijder te pueden matar a la contra… Nadie mueve tan bien el balón como la selección española y eso, unido a sus tres últimos años, la convierten en la gran favorita para ganar. Ya lo era antes de empezar el Mundial y ahora, más. Pero mal harían en fiarse, porque Holanda está muy bien“.

“Spain will hold the ball but Robben and Sneijder can kill them on the counter… Nobody moves the ball around like the Spanish side and that, combined with their last three years, makes them the great favorite to win. It was that way before the World Cup and even more so now. But it would be wrong to be too sure about it because Holland is very good.”

Wesley Sneijder is chasing history. If he wins on Sunday, he would become the only man to ever win a domestic title, Champions League and World Cup in the same year.

Wesley Sneijder is chasing history. If he wins on Sunday, he would become the only man to ever win a domestic title, Champions League and World Cup in the same year.

Johann Cruyff: “All of the Dutch preferred Germany in the final.”

España, la copia del Barça, es el mejor anuncio del fútbol. Y la prueba de que jugando bien, queriendo agradar, apostando por un fútbol ofensivo, tienes más posibilidades de ganar que especulando. Todos los holandeses preferían a Alemania en la final. Por dos motivos fundamentales:

Uno, querían intentar ganar a los alemanes en una final, recordando la del 74. Y, dos, España se queda con el balón y Holanda, con menos físico y fondo que Alemania, que anoche las pasó canutas y acabó desfondada, sabe que no va a poder perseguir el balón durante los 90 minutos de la final“.

“Spain, a copy of Barcelona, is the best advertisement for football. And the proof is that by playing well, wanting to entertain, dictating with an offensive football, you have more possibilities to win than speculated. All of the Dutch preferred Germany in the final. For two fundamental reasons:

One, they wanted to beat the Germans in a final looking back to 1974. And secondly, Spain holds the ball and Holland, with a less physical nature than Germany, who the other night looked out of sorts, knows that they can’t chase the ball during the 90 minutes of the final.”

Spanish source: Marca.com, July 8-9, 2010.

Steve Amoia is a freelance writer, editor and translator from Washington, D.C. He writes the World Football Commentaries blog. He has written for AC Cugini Scuola Calcio (Italian soccer school), Football Media, Keeper Skool and Soccerlens.

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