Netherlands have been knocked out of the U19 European Championships in the group stage after a 1-1 draw with Spain.

ned u19Aron Winter’s side went into the final group game needing to beat Spain to progress to the semi-finals, but after a 1-1 draw, Netherlands are heading home from Greece.

Spain dominated the first 45 minutes, but only had one goal to show for it, with Ajax defender Damon Marani accidentally diverting a cross past Joel Drommel after eight minutes. The Twente keeper also had to be alert to deny Afonso Pedraza as Netherlands struggled to find any way into the game.

At half time Winter rung the changes with Tarik Kada replacing Bilal Ould-Chick, and Augustine Loof coming on for Thomas Ouwejan. The substitutions seemed to galvanise Netherlands and ten minutes into the second half they were awarded a penalty for a foul on Pelle van Amersfoort, and the Heerenveen striker made no mistake in leveling the score.

The Dutch then took control of the game with Frenkie de Jong and Abdelhak Nouri starting to assert themselves in the midfield, but there was too be no winning goal as Spain held on to reach the semi-finals.

Its the third time in a row that the Dutch have exited the U19 Euros in the group stage, and it caps a woeful summer for Dutch youth sides with the U17’s and U21’s also failing to impress in tournaments over the past few months.

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