Australia v Netherlands: Robin Van Persie hails impressive Dutch performance as World Cup hopes grow
Man United striker cautions teammates not to get ahead of themselves
Monday 16 June 2014
In a World Cup not short on excitement, the Netherlands have nevertheless provided the tournament's biggest thrill.
Their 5-1 dismantling of defending champions Spain shocked the football world and had many talking up Dutch hopes in Brazil.
However the scorer of that game's most spectacular goal, Manchester United striker Robin van Persie, has urged his teammates not to get carried away.
"After such a performance, the dynamics have naturally changed. However, as a country, we shouldn't get ahead of ourselves. We have to stay realistic," van Persie said. "We achieved an impressive result but we have a long way to go to win this tournament.
"This is my fifth (major) tournament and I know how these things work: the euphoria vanishes just as quickly as it appears."
A win for the Dutch in their next game would leave them well placed to top Group B, and therefore in all probability avoid a second round clash with hosts Brazil.
Their next opponents are Australia who showed despite the margin of defeat against Chile in their opening game did at least show they are capable of causing an opponent some problems.
However for the Socceroos to cause any kind of upset, you feel they need a star performance from their veteran striker Tim Cahill.
Dutch midfielder Nigel de Jong singled the former Premier League stalwart out as one for his teammates to watch out for. Tim Cahill scored against Chile
"He's a terrific player that always gives his heart and his all on the pitch. For his country or his club," de Jong said. "We have to be careful because the timing to the ball with his headers is one of the best; he's one of the best timers I've seen from all the players around the world.
"So we have to take care of that very well. We have to take this game very serious."
Defeat for Australia would almost certainly send them out of the competition.
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