Netherlands will need a miracle similar to the one Barcelona produced against Paris Saint-Germain during last year's Champions League in order to qualify for the World Cup, according to Dutch legend Ronald de Boer.
On Saturday, Netherlands travel to Belarus while Sweden host Luxembourg. But with the Swedes enjoying a goal difference of +6 over the Dutch - and expected to beat Luxembourg handsomely - the likelihood is that Dick Advocaat's men will, in order to make the playoffs, have to rack up a huge win over Sweden when they host them on the final matchday on Tuesday.
And De Boer, who won 67 caps for his country and played in two World Cups, believes Netherlands will have to repeat the Champions League miracle Barcelona produced earlier this year when they thrashed PSG 6-1 at Camp Nou after losing the first leg 4-0.
"It's looking very bad for Netherlands. I give us maybe a five per cent chance to qualify for the World Cup," ex-Barca ace De Boer told Goal at the ASPIRE4SPORT Congress at Stamford Bridge.
"We will play Belarus. It is not easy to play over there. History tells us we always have problems there. Let's say we win 1-0 or 2-0, Sweden are playing at home against Luxembourg and I believe they can score four goals at least.
"That would mean we have to probably beat Sweden 5-0 or 6-0 in Amsterdam [on Tuesday].
"Everything is possible. We saw Barcelona do it against PSG, but Barcelona are not the Dutch team."
Netherlands' chances of progression have been hit further by injuries to key players Kevin Strootman and Stefan de Vrij, who will miss both matches against Belarus and Sweden.