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WC Qualification Europe

  • October 15, 2013
  • • 2:00 PM
  • • Şükrü Saracoğlu Stadyumu, İstanbul
  • Referee: Olegário Manuel Benquerenca
  • • Attendance: 41814
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World Cup Qualifying Preview: Turkey - Netherlands

World Cup Qualifying Preview: Turkey - Netherlands

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With the Oranje already wrapping up top spot in Group D, Fatih Terim and his side will look to exploit any lack of urgency as it bids to clinch a runner-up berth.

Turkey will look to secure its place in the World Cup playoffs when the team hosts Group D winner Netherlands in Istanbul on Tuesday.

Fatih Terim's men currently occupy second place in their European qualification pool - nine points behind the Netherlands - but the runners-up berth remains well up for grabs.

Indeed, Romania and Hungary, who face Estonia and Andorra respectively in their final games, are both in with a shout for the playoffs, although Turkey boasts a superior goal difference going into the last round of fixtures.

Terim's side will head into the game with confidence, having won its last five qualifiers while conceding just once in those games.

In Buruk Yilmaz, they also have an in-form striker to call upon, with the Galatasaray forward having scored five times during their purple patch.

The team's most recent success saw Burak and club mate Umut Bulut net as Turkey beat Estonia in Tallinn last Friday.

However, Turkey will also need to be aware of the fearsome form that Louis van Gaal's men are in, with the Netherlands having not lost a World Cup qualifier since Sept. 2001.

A 2-0 win over Turkey in the reverse fixture last September formed part of their 31-game unbeaten streak, with the most recent addition to the run being last Friday's 8-1 demolition of Hungary.

While Van Gaal's men may struggle to rack up a similar scoreline against Turkey, the coach is hopeful for a repeat of the industry on show in Amsterdam.

"We put the opponent under pressure for the full 90 minutes. The effort and the willingness was enormous," he said. "It's a difficult process to squeeze right from the start and then to sustain it."

Robin van Persie scored a hat trick against Hungary to overtake Patrick Kluivert as his country's record goalscorer, meaning he is sure to go into the match in Turkey full of confidence.

Van Gaal can also look to his resolute defense, which has kept five clean sheets in nine qualifiers, as he seeks to end qualification on a high.

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