Netherlands and Wales have met seven times before with the Oranje tasting victory each time. That perfect record will be put to the test when the two nations meet in Cardiff on Friday.

  • By Michael Bell
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ned walesThe first meeting between the two nations took place just after Netherlands lifted the European Championship trophy in 1988 with a single Ruud Gullit goal giving them a 1-0 victory in a World Cup qualifier. A year later the two met in the reverse fixture at the Racecourse Ground with the Oranje coming out 2-1 winners thanks to goals from defender Graeme Rutjes and substitute striker John Bosman.

Three years later in 1992 Netherlands hosted Wales in the first friendly between the two nations, in a match that current Oranje coach Danny Blind captained Rinus Michel’s side. The tie in Utrecht was an easy 4-0 victory for the Dutch with Bryan Roy, Marco van Basten, Aron Winter and Wim Jonk scoring.

Wales and Netherlands were drawn together again in the qualifiers for the 1998 World Cup. The first fixture in Wales saw the home side nearly cause an upset as Dean Saunders opened the scoring, but a double from Pierre van Hooijdonk and a Ronald De Boer strike, which all came in the space of seven minutes, handed Netherlands a 3-1 win.

A month later Netherlands battered an injury ravaged Welsh side 7-1 in Eindhoven. Dennis Bergkamp netted a hat-trick during the game, while Jonk, both De Boer brothers, and Phillip Cocu also scored. Saunders added the consolation for Wales.

That match in 1996 was the last competitive meeting between the two nations, with the last two ties being friendlies. In 2008 Marco van Basten’s side triumphed 2-0 thanks to goals from Arjen Robben and Wesley Sneijder, while last year Robben again and Jeremain Lens gave Louis van Gaal’s team a comfortable 2-0 pre-World Cup win.

Danny Blind’s side go into Fridays tie with a goal difference of 21 scored and only three conceded, but its the Welsh who will be the more confident after they qualified for the European Championships, while Netherlands missed out.

Without star men Gareth Bale and Aaron Ramsey can the Welsh gain their first ever win against the Dutch?

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