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Goal.com speaks exclusively to Ajax Cape Town's coach...

EXCLUSIVE

With Netherlands facing Uruguay tonight in the first World Cup semi-final, Goal.com spoke to Ajax Cape Town's Dutch coach Foppe De Haan to get his thoughts on the crucial encounter and the way his national team have been playing at the tournament.

Do you think the Dutch team is acting on their maximum ability?


The Dutch team is growing, tonight I just hope they play a good game. We have a good shape, if you look at all the players we are better than Uruguay, so Holland just have to win.

What is the best position for Robin van Persie in this team?

I think he should be played on the side, and maybe that will be better for him, but for the team his current position is the best. At the moment having him play behind the strikers is best for the team and one thing is for sure - you don't need two captains on one ship.

Watching the five-time world champions Brazil playing an underrated Dutch side did you at some stage think you could beat Dunga's Boys?


No, during the first half I think we played too shy but the aggression was still good. In the second half we had to go for it because we were lucky that it was 1-0 when it should have been 2-0 and then it's over. We made it 1-1 and from there it was Holland that was playing football.

Which player has been your revelation of the tournament and the footballer who you believe can go on to become the player of the tournament?

For me it has to be Van Bommel, he is very good. He is the captain of the team and an organiser. When he has the ball he always plays the ball onside and his interceptions have been good. He is just outstanding.

How do you analyse the fact that none of the players you crowned Under-21 champions in 2007 are starters in the current Dutch squad? Is there a gap behind the current 'Golden' generation?

I don't think there is a huge gap. It just takes them one or two years and they will all be there. The assistant keeper is there and he could play at any time, so i think it's just a matter of them maturing.

Do you believe Holland have what it takes to be crowned champions on July 11 at Soccer City?

Yeah I hope so, but remember we are going to have to play against Germany or Spain and they are both very good sides. Germany played a very good game against Argentina and I was really impressed, such that I showed the video to the young Ajax Cape Town players of how football should be played.

Spain are a good side and they have been improving by each game since they won the European championships, but now they look tired. When you play in the final you can always win and I believe we will win this cup.

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