Klaas Jan Huntelaar scored twice and Quincy Owusu-Abeyie added another goal as the Netherlands moved top of UEFA European Under-21 Championship qualifying Group 1 in Armenia.
The visitors were in control for most of the 90 minutes, but it was not their fine passing game that yielded the first goal. Huntelaar showed a moment of personal brilliance on 29 minutes when he received a pass and sent the ball into the top corner of Armenian goal from 25 metres. With 12 minutes to go before the break, the Dutch doubled their lead. Artur Stepanyan fouled Dwight Tiendalli in Armenia's penalty area, and Huntelaar was on hand to convert the penalty.
However, after the break the first dangerous attack by Armenia resulted in a goal. Vahe Tadevosyan's corner came to Tigran Karabagtsyan, who rose over the Dutch defence to power a header into the net. But the Netherlands quickly replied, as their main playmaker Daniel De Ridder spotted substitute Owusu-Abeyie on 76 minutes, and the striker calmly finished. De Ridder and Eldridge Royer also hit the woodwork in the first and second halves respectively.
The Netherlands' main challengers, Romania and the Czech Republic, drew 0-0 today, leaving the Dutch one and two points ahead of those side respectively. Whatever the result, victory for the Dutch in the Czech Republic, who have a game in hand in midweek against fifth-placed Armenia, on 7 October and at home to F.Y.R. Macedonia four days later would take them through to the play-offs.