San Marino on the end of record Netherlands win
Friday, 2 September 2011
Netherlands 11-0 San Marino
The hosts are six points clear at the top of Group E after Robin van Persie scored four in the biggest win in the Oranje's history.
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Robin van Persie scored four as the Netherlands recorded an 11-0 win against San Marino, the biggest in their history, which maintained a 100% record in UEFA EURO 2012 qualifying Group E.
In registering their seventh successive victory in the section, the Oranje eclipsed their 9-0 scorelines against Finland and Norway from 1912 and 1972 respectively. In addition to Van Persie, Wesley Sneijder and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar both scored twice, with John Heitinga, Dirk Kuyt and substitute Georginio Wijnaldum also on target in Eindhoven.
The unmarked Van Persie started the avalanche after seven minutes when he finished off a cross from Dutch captain Mark van Bommel. Sneijder then controlled a Kevin Strootman pass, turned away from his marker and fired a 20-metre drive into the top left-hand corner, before Heitinga headed in Kuyt's centre. In a rare forward foray, San Marino threatened through Andy Selva's long-range attempt but there was worse to come for the visitors.
Three goals up by half-time, Bert van Marwijk's men stepped up several gears after the break, with Kuyt lobbing in number four following neat interplay between Van Persie and Huntelaar. By finishing off Sneijder's assist on 56 minutes, Huntelaar continued his sequence of scoring in every qualifier he has appeared in during this campaign.
Van Persie completed his hat-trick with two goals in quick succession midway through the second half, while Huntelaar was next to get in on the act with his tenth goal in the group after Strootman had broken down the right. Eleven minutes from time, Van Persie struck his fourth, with Sneijder's shot then ensuring a new landmark for Dutch football by taking the score into double figures.
There was still time for debutant Wijnaldum, on his home ground, to apply the coup de grace with almost the last kick of the game. Sweden's loss to Hungary earlier in the evening means the 2010 FIFA World Cup runners-up have a six-point lead over their rivals at the top of the group. Erik Hamrén's side will seek a response against San Marino on Tuesday, when the Netherlands − assured of a top-two finish − play Finland.