Netherlands 0 Denmark 1: Van Marwijk defends Van Persie
Bert van Marwijk refuses to criticise Robin van Persie after the striker was wasteful during the Netherland's 1-0 loss to Denmark
Bert van Marwijk defended Robin van Persie after the Arsenal striker was guilty of missing a number of chances as the Netherlands suffered a shock defeat by Denmark in their Euro 2012 opener.
Denmark striker Michael Krohn-Dehli made the Dutch pay for their wastefulness with a first-half winner as Van Persie missed several opportunities to level either side of half-time.
The Netherlands had 28 attempts on the Denmark goal overall but Van Merwijk leapt to the defence of the Gunners captain, pointing out that striker was not the only party guilty of squandering chances in front of Stephan Andersen’s goal.
“It was not only Robin van Persie. There were maybe four, five, six players who had a lot of chances. And the referee had also a chance to give us a penalty,” said Van Marwijk.
“I’m not looking for excuses. I’m just trying to give answers to the questions.”
“The players really wanted to do something with all the chances but the ball just didn’t want to go in. We put the substitutes on [Huntelaar and Rafael van der Vaart with 20 minutes left] and were even more attacking – we had even more chance after that – but this is the game.
“We were really determined, but you have to score that goal, of course. When there’s a penalty that doesn’t go in your favour, that’s unfortunate but that’s part of the game.
“We just have to beat Germany. That’s not going to be easy but that’s the goal now and everyone knows that.”