The Netherlands' qualification for UEFA Women's EURO 2009 and subsequent run to the semi-finals in Finland was a real breakthrough.
Although the team had already existed for nearly 30 years, there had been little success despite the presence in the 1980s and 1990s of defender Vera Pauw, who turned professional in Italy. It was her appointment as coach in 2005 that changed matters, and after a promising 2007 FIFA Women's World Cup qualifying bid which included a win in France, they made it to Finland in 2009 with a play-off defeat of seeds Spain.
Once there, the Netherlands proved a tough team to beat, overcoming Ukraine and crucially Denmark to reach the quarter-finals where they beat France on penalties. Although they then lost 2-1 in extra-time to England, their performance earned the players Olympic funding from the Dutch government. Pauw stepped down the following year, but under Roger Reijners they made it to UEFA Women's EURO 2013 with a more expansive style, finishing behind England in their group but ending as best runners-up to avoid the play-offs.
Qualifying round: Group 6 runners-up, P8 W6 D1 L1 F20 A2 Pts19 (best runners-up)
Daphne Koster (defender, AFC Ajax), Anouk Hoogendijk (midfielder, AFC Ajax), Manon Melis (forward, Linköpings FC)
Coach: Roger Reijners
Date of birth: 10 February 1964
Playing career: Fortuna Sittard, MVV Maastricht
Coaching career: MVV Maastricht, Fortuna Sittard, Netherlands women
Netherlands Under-21 midfielder Reijners turned professional with Fortuna and in his first season played in the Dutch Cup final against Feyenoord. After nine seasons he joined MVV where after retirement in 1995, Reijners became a youth coach.
Five years later, Reijners began a three-year spell as MVV's first-team coach before moving to Fortuna, where he first led the youth squad then, after a time as assistant, took charge in 2007. Again, he remained for three years until in November 2010, Reijners took a job as Netherlands women's coach, leading them to UEFA Women's EURO 2013 in his first full qualifying campaign.
Qualifying top scorer
Manon Melis 8
2005: did not qualify
2001: did not qualify
1997: did not qualify
1995: did not qualify
1987: did not qualify
1984: did not qualify
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