Netherlands to face England in last four after Turkey turnaround

Netherlands scored twice in six second-half minutes to beat Turkey 2-1 and set up a Euro 2024 semi-final against England on Wednesday.

Netherlands had won just one of their previous 10 European Championship matches when behind at half-time yet were inspired by the introduction of striker Wout Weghorst at the break which helped force the turnaround.

Turkey had enjoyed the better of the first half and took their chance in the 35th minute when teenager Arda Guler delivered a perfect cross from the right for centre-back Samet Akaydin to head home from inside the six-yard box.

Team news:

  • Ronald Koeman named an unchanged side from Netherlands’ 3-0 victory over Romania in the last 16.
  • Turkey were forced into three changes due to suspensions. Samet Akaydin, Salih Ozcan and captain Hakan Calhanoglu all came into the side for Merih Demiral, İsmail Yuksek and Orkun Kokcu.

Netherlands’ attack had struggled to click but Weghorst, on for Steven Bergwijn at the interval, gave them more presence up against the three Turkey centre-backs, immediately setting up a chance for Memphis Depay.

Turkey, though, despite coming under more pressure in the second half, still saw Guler hit the outside of the left post with a long-range free-kick and forced the unsighted Bart Verbruggen to parry from Kenan Yildiz’s drive.

Turkey's defender #04 Samet Akaydin celebrates scoring the opening goal with his teammates during the UEFA Euro 2024 quarter-final football match between the Netherlands and Turkey at the Olympiastadion in Berlin on July 6, 2024. (Photo by JOHN MACDOUGALL / AFP)
Samet Akaydin (middle) celebrates scoring for Turkey.

But after Weghorst’s volley had been tipped behind for a corner, Turkey switched off and Depay’s cross was headed in by the unmarked Stefan de Vrij in the 70th minute before Netherlands took the lead moments later when Mert Muldur inadvertently turned Denzel Dumfries’ cross into his own net under pressure from Cody Gakpo.

Turkey mounted a late onslaught with substitute Zeki Celik’s goalbound effort blocked yards from the line by Micky van de Ven and after Gakpo had been denied, Verbruggen made an outstanding save in added time to keep out Semih Kilicsoy from close range.

What they said…

Netherlands captain Virgil van Dijk said:

“How is my heart? It’s fine. You know they’re going to take a lot of risks, but now we’re in the semi-finals. This is very important and very beautiful, with such a crowd. We knew there would be a lot of Turks in the stadium, but I’m proud of these guys.

“In the end we got sloppy, but actually we didn’t give anything away. In the second half, we had to stay calm and take advantage of our chances. Of course, we thought it would be fine, it would be very bad if we didn’t think so. We are one step closer. We can get to work!”

Turkey captain Hakan Calhanoglu said:

“Unfortunately, we could only make it this far. I am happy if we could bring excitement to our nation. Of course, we wanted to continue this path. Unfortunately, there is also losing in football. I would like to, once again, thank all our fans.

“We didn’t start the second half well, we retreated. After the second goal, we tried long balls and took our chances.

“I am proud to have come this far. Everyone represented their country in the best possible way. I would like to thank all my team-mates.”

Stats: Story of the match

Who plays who in the semi-finals?

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