The Netherlands opened their tournament with a 2-0 success over Senegal on November 21, which placed them in a brilliant position to book their spot in the knockout stage heading into their second game with Ecuador.
Cody Gakpo’s second goal of the World Cup saw Louis van Gaal’s side take the lead against Ecuador on Friday, but Enner Valencia came up with a leveler early in the second period, with the two sides sharing the spoils, so Holland still has work to do when it comes to progressing in the competition.
As mentioned, Van Gaal’s side would be through to the round of 16 if they win or draw against Qatar, while a defeat would also see them qualify, providing that Ecuador overcomes Senegal.
The Netherlands will certainly not want to take any chances when it comes to their progression, but it would be a shock if they were unable to qualify for this position.
Holland failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup, but they have finished second and third in their last two tournaments, so it would certainly not be a shock to see them advance deep into the competition.
The first position in Group A would see them take on the runner-up in Group B, which will be either England, Iran, the USA, or Wales, with all four sides still battling to qualify for the next round.
Qatar, meanwhile, has been eliminated in the group stage, with the host nation losing their opening two matches at the tournament to Ecuador and Senegal.
Felix Sanchez’s side started their Group A campaign with a 2-0 defeat to Ecuador on November 20 before suffering a 3-1 loss to Senegal in their second match of the competition on Friday.
Qatar scored in the 78th minute of their clash with Senegal to halve the deficit, but Aliou Cisse’s side secured all three points when they netted a third in the 84th minute, and the host nation now only has the pride to play for in what will be their final game of the 2022 competition.
The Maroons, who have been competing in the finals of a World Cup for the first time, will be back in competitive action in January, preparing to take part in the Gulf Cup of Nations.
Qatar has never faced the Netherlands in an international match, so they will create more history on Tuesday, and it would be some achievement if they managed to pick up a victory at Al Bayt Stadium in Al Khor.
Netherlands Team News
Van Gaal has been easing Memphis Depay back into the fold following injury and could make his first tournament start here.
Steven Berghuis may also be called into the starting XI in place of Teun Koopmeiners, while Davy Klaassen is likely to return to the bench.
Netherlands Predicted Lineup vs Qatar
Netherlands Starting 11 (3-4-1-2): Noppert; Timber, Van Dijk, Ake; Dumfries, Berghuis, F. De Jong, Blind; Gakpo; Memphis, Bergwijn
Bench: Bijlow, Pasveer, Frimpong, Malacia, De Ligt, De Vrij, Taylor, Koopmeiners, Klaassen, De Roon, Janssen, Lang, Simons, L. De Jong, Weghorst
Qatar Team News
Qatar was much improved in the second half of their loss to Senegal, so manager Felix Sanchez could call on some of the names who helped change the game.
Mohammed Muntari, having grabbed their first goal of the tournament, is in line for a start as a reward.
Qatar Starting 11 (3-5-2): Barsham; Miguel, Khoukhi, Hassan; Mohammad, Boudiaf, Madibo, Al-Haydos, Ahmed; Afif, Muntari
Bench: Sheeb, Ali, Abdulsallam, Al-Hadhrami, Waad, Salman, Hatem, Assadalla, Kheder, Mashaal, Alaaeldin, Hajri, Ali, Mazeed
Netherlands vs Qatar Prediction
After such a disappointing showing against Ecuador last time out, the Netherlands will be keen to flex their attacking muscle again, especially when faced with such a weak Qatar side.
The Maroon’s destiny has already been sealed and while they may play without a bit of pressure put on them in the opening games, the difference in quality between themselves and the Dutch will still be hugely telling.
Prediction: Netherlands 3-0 Qatar