The Dutch women’s football team are out of the European Cup competition in England after losing their quarter final tie with France 0-1.
The defending champions had held the French to a 0-0 draw at the end of regular play, with new keeper Daphne van Domselaar again putting on a cast iron display. But the French converted an extra time penalty to end Dutch hopes of reaching the semi-finals.
‘I am unbelievably proud of the players and staff,’ Dutch coach Mark Parsons told the Uefa website. ‘We gave everything; there is not a player with an ounce of energy left. The first half was very difficult… Second half was much better; we really believed in extra time but we had tired bodies. I couldn’t be prouder of the effort.’
The Dutch squad had been beset by problems, including coronavirus infections and injury which put out team stalwart Lieke Martens.
‘We knew it would be a very difficult game,’ said defender Stefanie van der Gragt after the match. ‘We managed to keep it scoreless for a long time, so to lose to a penalty… It’s a bitter feeling.’
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