Netherlands U21’s are into the European Championship semi-finals after a last gasp Myron Boadu strike sealed a 2-1 win over France.

Erwin van de Looi’s side went into the game as underdogs with France’s U21 side packed full of excellent talents, while Netherlands were without Teun Koopmeiners, Cody Gakpo, Jurrien Timber and Ryan Gravenberch, who are all with the main Oranje squad. Noa Lang and Brian Brobbey also dropped out injured.

However, the game was even from the start and the first big chance fell to Netherlands with Calvin Stengs seeing an effort deflected just wide.

In the 22nd minute, Justin Bijlow was forced into an excellent save and from the resulting corner, France took the lead. Dayot Upamecano was free to head past Bijlow.

Houssem Aouar should have made it 2-0 but he shot off target, while at the other end, Justin Kluivert got a great chance but could only blaze it over the bar.

Five minutes into the second half, Netherlands did equalise when Abdou Harroui’s strike deflected to Myron Boadu, who was onside and finished from close range.

Netherlands then sat back and survived a massive chance as Ikoné first saw his effort blocked by Perr Schuurs before putting the follow up against the post. Aurélien Tchouaméni forced Bijlow into another good save as France took control. Aouar header over from close range and Romain Faivre also saw a shot saved by the excellent Bijlow.

Just as the game was heading for extra-time, Netherlands broke through Bijlow and Stengs, who then played Kluivert through on goal. The winger crossed for Boadu to guide the ball into the net to seal an impressive win for the young Dutch side.

Netherlands progress to face either Denmark or Germany in the semi-finals.




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