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Van Bronckhorst tips Netherlands to take final step

A runner-up at last year's FIFA World Cup in South Africa, ex-Netherlands captain Giovanni van Bronckhorst tells UEFA.com the Oranje can go one better at UEFA EURO 2012.

Van Bronckhorst tips Netherlands to take final step
Van Bronckhorst tips Netherlands to take final step ©uefa.com 1998-2012. All rights reserved.

Giovanni van Bronckhorst retired from football after skippering the Netherlands to last year's FIFA World Cup final, but believes his former colleagues are improving all the time and can make up for the disappointment of that loss to Spain by winning UEFA EURO 2012.

The Netherlands have made a perfect start to qualifying for next summer's tournament, and Van Bronckhorst feels there is plenty of potential in the current crop. "I think they can become very good," he told UEFA.com. "The core of the team has already played for a lot of years. After the World Cup I am the only one, with [André] Ooijer, who doesn't play any more. So the team is almost the same squad as in [South] Africa, and the experience of getting to the final will only make it stronger."

Now the focus is on taking that final step. "I am very curious how strong they will be come 2012," added the 36-year-old former Feyenoord, Rangers FC, Arsenal FC and FC Barcelona midfielder cum full-back. "Probably stronger than in Africa. So hopefully we can get to the final again, and win it this time."

A change in mentality has also helped. "We've developed very well. I think the big difference with previous tournaments [is] we were playing really well, playing good football, but in the end we always lost in the quarter or semi-finals. I think the switch we had from 2008 to the World Cup in South Africa, we changed that a bit."

Watch the full interview above on UEFA.com.