Netherlands U21’s gave away a half time 2-0 lead before slumping to a 4-2 defeat against Slovakia U21’s in a European Championship qualifier.

  • By Michael Bell
  • Follow Michael on Twitter

janssen oranBefore the game the young Dutch players spoke about wanting revenge after the Slovakian’s triumphed 3-1 in the Netherlands last month, and the start of the game was dominated by Fred Grim’s side.

After a few good chances were squandered Netherlands took the lead on 16 minutes when Vincent Janssen diverted Jorrit Hendrix’s shot into the top corner. The duo were inches away from combining once again moments later as the PSV midfielder’s cross was just too quick for the sliding AZ striker.

Janssen would eventually make it 2-0 halfway through the first half with a vicious strike which came off the underside of the bar before crossing the line. Before the break it could have been more with Tonny Vilhena striking over the bar from close range.

However Grim’s side emerged in the second half a totally different team and they handed the game right back to the hosts.

Jaroslav Mihalik pulled a goal back early in the second half before Groningen midfielder Albert Rusnak equalised with a header soon after. Martin Chrien gave the Slovakian’s the lead with ten minutes to go and after Derick Luckassen gave away a spot kick in injury time, Adam Zrelák completed the victory.

Only the group’s top side automatically qualifies for the tournament in 2017, and Netherlands now slip to 2nd in the group behind Slovakia, who have played one game less.

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