06 Apr 2023 at 17:34
Just before leaving for Australia and New Zealand, where the World Cup is played, the Orange Women will play a friendly match against Belgium. The farewell match will be played in Kerkrade on July 2, the KNVB announced on Thursday.
“Competitions against Belgium always bring a special feeling,” says national coach Andries Jonker. “It is a match with history and because the match is played in Kerkrade, we expect many fans from both countries. In addition, we will meet a serious opponent with Belgium in the run-up to the World Cup.”
Unlike the Netherlands, Belgium is missing at the World Cup, which lasts from July 20 to August 20. The Belgians finished second in their qualifying group behind group winner Norway. In the subsequent play-offs, they lost against Portugal (1-2). Portugal is one of the three World Cup opponents of the Orange, in addition to defending champions United States and Vietnam.
The Netherlands last played against Belgium in February 2021, which is currently nineteenth in the world rankings. In the King Baudouin Stadium in Brussels, the Orange won 1-6. Last year, the team of national coach and former professional footballer Ives Serneels surprised with a place in the quarter-finals of the European Championship in England.
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The Orange will play a total of three exhibition games in the run-up to the World Cup. On Friday, Jonker’s team will practice in Sittard against Germany, which lost the final of the European Championship to host country England last year. A showdown with Poland will follow on Tuesday.
Five days after the friendly match against Belgium, the Orange women board a plane to Sydney, where a ten-day training camp will be held in the run-up to the World Cup. After that, the Netherlands sets up camp in New Zealand. The three group matches will also be played there. The first is on July 23 in Dunedin against Portugal.
Program Orange women towards the World Cup
Friday at 8 p.m.: Netherlands-Germany (Sittard)Tuesday at 8 p.m.: Netherlands-Poland (Rotterdam)2 July at 8:45 p.m.: Netherlands-Belgium (Kerkrade)