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Netherlands comeback overcomes Kazakhstan

Netherlands 3-1 Kazakhstan
The Netherlands came from behind thanks to second-half goals from Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, Ibrahim Afellay and Robin van Persie.

Highlights: Netherlands v Kazakhstan

The Netherlands trail at half-time but pick up first Group A points
Renat Abdulin heads Kazakhstan in front
Klaas-Jan Huntelaar levels six minutes after coming on
Ibrahim Afellay and Robin van Persie win it in last eight minutes
Next games: Iceland v Netherlands, Kazakhstan v Czech Republic (Monday)

The Netherlands were behind at half-time but rallied to get off the UEFA EURO 2016 qualifying Group A mark against Kazakhstan.

Guus Hiddink made four changes to the Dutch side that lost to the Czech Republic last month including the return of Arjen Robben. They took the initiative from the start and on 12 minutes Jeremain Lens forced keeper Aleksandr Mokin into a save; Robin van Persie turned in the rebound but was offside.

Five minutes later, however, Kazakhstan shocked the Amsterdam ArenA. When captain Andrei Karpovich delivered a corner from the right, Renat Abdulin shook off Bruno Martins Indi to score with a diving header that went in via the underside of the crossbar.

Van Persie and Robben could not find an equaliser before the break, and after the interval the Manchester United FC striker was foiled one-on-one by Mokin and Ibrahim Afellay shot over. Hiddink needed fresh inspiration and striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar replaced Nigel de Jong on 56 minutes.

Six minutes later it paid off as Huntelaar rose above the Kazakhstan defence to nod in Ibrahim Afellay's cross from the right. Things did not improve for Kazakhstan as Baurzhan Dzolchiyev was sent off for a foul on Afellay two minutes later.

The Netherlands kept on pushing and Robben rattled the crossbar with a free-kick. The decider eventually came from Afellay with eight minutes to go, his left-foot drive from outside the area deflecting in off the post after a Robben shot was half-cleared. Just before the end Van Persie was brought down in the box by Abdulin and the skipper converted the penalty himself.

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