Dutch PM hopes for Netherlands-Aus WC final

Updated: 25 February 2007 10:39 IST

The Dutch Prime Minister would like to see his nation's soccer side clash with a relative World Cup novice Australia in the July 9 final in Berlin.

Dutch PM hopes for Netherlands-Aus WC final

Canberra:

Dutch Prime Minister Jan Peter Balkenende said on Tuesday he would like to see his nation's soccer side clash with a relative World Cup novice Australia in the July 9 final in Berlin. "It would be very nice, prime minister, if we could see each other again in the final of the world championship," Balkenende told his Australian counterpart John Howard at a lunch in Canberra during the Dutch leader's visit. There is a clear link between soccer in the two countries, Balkenende said. The coach hailed as a genius for leading Australia to its first World Cup since 1974 is Dutchman Guus Hiddink. He also guided his home country to the semi-finals in France in 1998 and repeated the feat in 2002 when he took co-host South Korea to the final four. Tough groups Australia, which plays in a green and gold strip, faces defending champion Brazil, Croatia and Japan in Group F and is considered an outsider to lift soccer's greatest prize. The Dutch - known for their orange uniforms - also have a tough qualifying group with Argentina, the Ivory Coast and Serbia in Group C, but are considered among the top contenders to take the title. The Netherlands has twice been a World Cup runner-up - in 1974 and 1978, losing in the final to hosts Germany and Argentina in the title matches. Fans of both the sides will be able to watch them play in a World Cup warm-up scheduled for June 4 in Rotterdam. (AP)

Topics : Football Cricket
Related Articles
Churchill Brothers Back in I-League as AIFF Looks For Teams
Churchill Brothers Back in I-League as AIFF Looks For Teams
48-Team World Cup Proposal Gets Thumbs up at FIFA Meeting
48-Team World Cup Proposal Gets Thumbs up at FIFA Meeting
Champions League: Borussia Dortmund Hold Real Madrid as Porto, Sevilla Make Last 16
Champions League: Borussia Dortmund Hold Real Madrid as Porto, Sevilla Make Last 16
Show Comments
Advertisement