5 million Dutch watch opening game

12th June 2006, Comments 0 comments

12 June 2006, AMSTERDAM – Millions of Dutch people watched the national side win 1-0 against Serbia and Montenegro during the team’s opening World Cup game on Sunday afternoon in Germany.

12 June 2006

AMSTERDAM – Millions of Dutch people watched the national side win 1-0 against Serbia and Montenegro during the team’s opening World Cup game on Sunday afternoon in Germany.

Around 5.4 million people tuned into the game on TV in their sitting rooms, ratings watchdog Stichting KijkOnderzoek (Viewer Ratings Foundation) said on Monday. By comparison, only 300,000 people watched the final match of the prestigious Roland Garros tennis tournament in Paris, which began at the same time as the Holland v. Serbia and Montenegro game.

The number of people who watched the game in pubs and stadiums is not yet known. The match between Angola and Portugal (0-1) drew nearly 2.6 million viewers, while the Mexico-Iran game was watched by around 2.2 million people.

On Monday the Dutch press, normally curmudgeonly in its evaluation of the national team, praised Holland’s performance in extravagant terms. “Class!” was the Algemeen Dagblad’s headline, while De Telegraaf described the game as a “great start” and a “promising overture”. De Volkskrant complimented coach Marco van Basten for his team selection.

The German papers were markedly less enthusiastic but agreed that Holland could do well in the tournament. The team’s first game in the World Cup had not been “great football”, said Die Welt, the online edition of Die Zeit, but it had been an important victory in the tournament’s “pool of death”, which includes Argentina, one of the world’s best teams.

Chelsea striker Arjen Robben, who scored Holland’s winning goal, was seen as the outstanding player of the game. Bild said that the game was a “Robben party”. However Robben’s success immediately became the source of much discussion in the (inter)national press and among Orange fans when fellow player Robin van Persie criticized Robben’s “solo attitude”. (Robben is known as a “dribbler”.)

“Pure jealousy,” said Bild.

[Copyright Expatica News + ANP 2006]

Subject: Dutch news

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