The Netherlands is one of the most important footballing nations. Famously, they’ve never actually won the World Cup, making the final three times.
Naturally, this makes the Dutch approach each World Cup tournament with a chip on their shoulder. It’s no different in 2022.
Although they might not be lauded among the favorites to win the tournament outright, the Oranje do retain some of the greatest talent players in world football.
This, and, what appears to be a lucky group draw, could work to their advantage.
Here’s The Netherlands’ potential in fantasy football, squad, and predicted line-up.
Fantasy football potential/Odds
For fantasy football fans, the Netherlands is one of the most exciting prospects. As usual, their squad features a balanced mix of established stars and up-and-coming talent.
This is also reflected in the players’ ratings in FootballCoin. Fewer top-rated teams have as many 1* and 2* with a realistic chance of seeing game time at the World Cup.
Tyrell Malacia, Jurrien Timber, Xavi Simmons, Cody Gakpo are among the team’s future stars. They’ve all already been signed by world-class clubs or look set to arrive there shortly.
And, while Holland does not have Messi or Ronaldo, proven stars are available. Virgil van Dijk is still, arguably, one of the world’s finest defenders. Mattjis de Ligt, Stefan de Vrij, or Denzel Dumfries round up a mighty defensive unit.
Meanwhile, Frenkie de Jong, Memphis Depay, and Wout Weghorst can bring much-needed creativity.
On paper, Netherlands looks like a team that fantasy football nerds will depend on heavily, especially for the group stage.
Full squad & predicted line-up
Goalkeepers: Justin Bijlow (Feyenoord), Andries Noppert (Heerenveen), Remko Pasveer (Ajax Amsterdam)
Defenders: Nathan Ake (Manchester City), Daley Blind (Ajax), Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool), Denzel Dumfries (Internazionale), Jeremie Frimpong (Bayer Leverkusen), Matthijs de Ligt (Bayern Munich), Tyrell Malacia (Manchester United), Jurrien Timber (Ajax), Stefan de Vrij (Inter Milan)
Midfielders: Steven Berghuis (Ajax), Frenkie de Jong (Barcelona), Davy Klaassen (Ajax), Teun Koopmeiners (Atalanta Bergamo), Marten de Roon (Atalanta Bergamo), Xavi Simons (PSV Eindhoven), Kenneth Taylor (Ajax)
Forwards: Steven Bergwijn (Ajax), Memphis Depay (Barcelona), Cody Gakpo (PSV), Vincent Janssen (Antwerp), Luuk de Jong (PSV), Noah Lang (Club Brugge), Wout Weghorst (Besiktas)
This is Netherlands’ predicted XI: Pasveer – Timber, van Dijk, Ake, Frimpong – de Jong, Koopmeiners, Blind, Gakpo – Bergwijn, Janssen
Tactics and formations
Expect Louis van Gaal’s team to play like a vintage Dutch side. That means that the Oranje enjoy high-paced, inventive, high-pressing football.
Formation-wise, van Gaal may switch from a 4-3-3 to something resembling a 3-4-1-2 when it suits him.
The team usually employs a classic playmaker, operating behind the two attackers. The wing-backs also tend to push up. Meanwhile, van Dijk is a ball-playing defender who likes to take on the responsibility of starting the attacking phase.
The questions asked about Holland’s attacking prowess may also receive a swift answer. Steven Bergwijn has been in fine form since returning to the Eredivisie.
Meanwhile, Depay and Weghorst are strikers equipped to face the world’s toughest defenders.
Virgil van Dijk – He was, not long ago, arguably, the world’s best defender. It made sense then that the Dutch side is built around his talents.
While his form has slumped, van Dijk continues to embody many of the virtues of modern football. These are qualities toward which van Gall strives.
Frenkie de Jong – The midfielder is a player that solves issues throughout the pitch. It’s the reason why his transfer was so hotly disputed in the summer.
On a good day, de Jong makes the Dutch side tick and allows everyone around him to play better. He has, however, failed to give conclusive proof of his talents in a major tournament yet.