Perfect Netherlands aim for more in Moldova
Sunday, 12 September 2010
The Netherlands will aim to prolong their perfect start to Group E when they take on a Moldova team who have taken three points from their opening two matches.
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The Netherlands head to Moldova for only their third meeting with their Group E rivals, knowing they can expect no favours from the former Soviet republic in the chase for top spot in their UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying section.
• Moldova's record in two games against the Netherlands reads W0 D0 L2 (W0 D0 L1 at home).
• The two nations have been pooled together once before, in qualifying for UEFA EURO 2004, when they met for the first time in Tiraspol on 2 April 2003. Midfielder Vadim Boret gave the hosts a 16th-minute lead, and although Ruud van Nistelrooy then equalised before the break, it took until five minutes from time for Mark van Bommel to earn the Oranje a 2-1 triumph.
• The return fixture was contested in Eindhoven on 11 October the same year, three days shy of precisely seven years ahead of their upcoming meeting. It proved more of a breeze for Dick Advocaat's side, with Patrick Kluivert, Wesley Sneijder, Pierre van Hooijdonk, Rafael van der Vaart and Arjen Robben on target in a 5-0 win.
• Sneijder and Robben registered their first competitive goals at senior international level in that encounter, while Van der Vaart hit his third.