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Netherlands v Hungary: Under-21 EURO background, form guide, previous meetings

Hungary bring down the curtain on their Group A campaign with a first competitive meeting against the Netherlands in 36 years.

Justin Kluivert and Che Nunnely in training in November 2020
Justin Kluivert and Che Nunnely in training in November 2020 Getty Images

Co-hosts Hungary bring down the curtain on their Group A campaign – and their tournament – with a first competitive Under-21 match against the Netherlands in 36 years.

• Having lost to Germany (0-3) and Romania (1-2), conceding the decisive goal in the 87th minute in the latter match, Hungary are bottom of the section and can no longer qualify for the quarter-finals. The Netherlands have drawn 1-1 against both Romania and Germany, who equalised Justin Kluivert's 48th-minute opener six minutes from time, and are two points behind both sides.

• The Netherlands are through if they beat Hungary and the other game in a victory for either side or 0-0. The Netherlands also go through if they win by any score other than 1-0 and the other game ends 1-1. The Netherlands win the group only if they win by three goals or more and the other game ends 0-0 or 1-1, though if it is the latter scoreline and the Netherlands win 3-0, they and Germany are split for first place on disciplinary ranking then coefficient.

• Hungary cannot finish in the top two.

Highlights: Germany 1-1 Netherlands (2 mins)

Previous meetings
• This is only the third European U21 Championship fixture between the sides, and the first since May 1985. Each side recorded a 1-0 home win in the qualifying competition for the 1986 knockout phase, the Netherlands winning in Breda on 16 October 1984 thanks to Edwin Bakker's 83rd-minute effort and Hungary doing likewise in the Budapest return on 13 May 1985 with a 14th-minute Wil Boessen own goal.

• The latter result secured Hungary's place at the top of qualifying Group 5 on ten points, one above the Dutch; they went on to finish fourth in the final tournament.

• Myron Boadu was on target in the Netherlands' 4-0 win against Hungary in European U17 Championship qualifying on 3 October 2016. Mitchel Bakker was also in the Netherlands' starting XI, while András Csonka played for Hungary.

Highlights: Romania 1-1 Netherlands (2 mins)

Form guide
• The Dutch have missed out on the last three U21 EURO final tournaments; this is their first appearance since losing to Italy in the 2013 semi-finals.

• Champions in Portugal in 2006 and again on home soil 12 months later, this is the Netherlands' sixth appearance in an eight or 12-team final tournament. They also reached the two-legged semi-finals in 1988.

• In the qualifying tournament for the 2019 finals, a team coached by Erwin van de Looi – who has been in charge since May 2018 – finished second behind England in their section.

• This time round, Van de Looi oversaw a near immaculate qualifying campaign, the Dutch finishing as top scorers overall with 46 goals – nine more than any other side – and winning nine of their ten fixtures. A 2-1 defeat by Portugal in their final encounter was not enough to prevent them finishing first in Group 7, above their opponents on head-to-head record.

Highlights: Hungary 1-2 Romania (2 mins)

• This is the co-hosts' first appearance at the U21 EURO finals. Hungary and fellow hosts Slovenia are the only sides to be making their debuts at the 2021 tournament.

• Before the eight-team final tournament was introduced for 1998, Hungary reached the quarter-finals of the 1996 event, losing 4-3 to Scotland over two legs (2-1 h, 1-3 a).

• The Hungarians, who were also losing quarter-finalists in the inaugural edition of the U21 competition in 1978 and again two years later, enjoyed their most successful campaign in 1986, losing to eventual champions Spain 5-4 on aggregate in the semi-finals (3-1 h, 1-4 a) having beaten Poland 5-1 over two legs in the last eight (0-1 a, 5-0 h).

• Hungary's most successful European U21 Championship campaign since 1996 came in 2006, when they lost to holders Italy in the qualifying play-offs (1-1 h, 0-1 a).

• A team coached by Michael Boris – who was succeeded by Zoltán Gera in June 2019 – finished fourth in qualifying Group 6 ahead of 2019 U21 EURO, behind Belgium, Sweden and Turkey having picked up 11 points from ten matches. Hungary lost their last five fixtures.

Links and trivia
• Gera captained Hungary against the Netherlands in two UEFA EURO 2012 qualifiers, a 4-0 defeat in Budapest on 25 March 2011 and a 5-3 loss in Amsterdam four days later in which he scored twice. He also skippered his country in a 4-1 home defeat by the Oranje in a FIFA World Cup qualifier on 11 September 2012.

• Has played in the Netherlands:
Adrián Szőke (Heracles Almelo 2019–)