Oranje lose to Croatia in Nations’ League semi-final

Virgil van Dijk after the game. Photo: Maurice van Steen ANP

Oranje have failed to meet the finals of the Nations League on their home turf after losing their semi-final against Croatia 2-4.

“We fought as lions but it was not good enough,” captain Virgil van Dijk said after the game at the Kuip stadium in Rotterdam. “It is really disappointing.”

Substitute Noa Lang put the Oranje back on track with the 2-2 equaliser in the dying moments of the regular game but Croatia was able to score twice more in extra time.

“I was very content with the first half but I felt we didn’t start the second half well,” Oranje coach Ronald Koeman told the Uefa website after the game.

“The Croatian midfield took control, and that made it difficult for us, especially after the penalty. Then you could see that they are a side which has been playing together for a long time.”

The Dutch media were also unimpressed by the Oranje performance, describing Croatia as “one size up” and the Dutch as “short on quality“.

Spain and Italy meet in the second semi-final on Thursday.

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