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Virgil van Dijk: Netherlands may have overestimated their ability before Euro 2024

Virgil van Dijk: Netherlands may have overestimated their ability before Euro 2024

Virgil van Dijk admits that the Netherlands may have "overestimated" themselves before Euro 2024.

The Oranje only made the last 16 as one of the best-performing third-placed teams in the group stage and the captain can accept the criticism that has followed in the aftermath of the 3-2 loss to Austria earlier this week.

Van Dijk said: "I can completely understand the criticism.

"Things overall can and should be better. Maybe we overestimate ourselves."

The Liverpool defender was at fault for Austria's winner and explained that some home truths have been exchanged amongst the squad in the days following the game.

Van Dijk said: "It goes without saying that I have to take responsibility now.

"We have spoken a lot in the last 48 hours and some harsh words have been spoken. That is of course necessary, because some things have certainly happened. I feel like it helped, but it’s really time to show that.

"It makes perfect sense. I’m going to work on that too. I blame myself too. I’m not crazy, I know when things need to be improved. That’s what I’m working on. That is the basis for getting better.

"The last match was definitely not my best, but personally that has not happened often this season. It is important to me that it stops now. That is the responsibility I take now. That responsibility is very great, especially at Oranje. And the criticism affects me."

Manager Ronald Koeman also offered a damning verdict on the defeat.

He said post-match: "I can list quite a few mistakes. We started very badly. We did not defend well. We were not aggressive, there was a lack of pressure and we lost the ball as well, particularly at the start so it was really very bad.

"The players ran a lot, but not in the positions so it was awful, very bad. We did not control the match. The match against France was reasonable as a team, but today it was appalling."

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