Spurs News

Micky van de Ven Can’t Resist Dig at ‘Defensive’ England Ahead of Euro 2024 Semi-Final

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Netherlands defender Micky van de Ven believes his team has the speed to handle England’s pacy attackers, regardless of whether he starts in Wednesday’s Euro 2024 semi-final.

Van de Ven, known for his blistering pace, has been used sparingly by coach Ronald Koeman so far in the tournament. However, he’s confident that experienced defenders Virgil van Dijk and Nathan Ake can contain England’s threats like Bukayo Saka and Kyle Walker.

“Saka is a fantastic player with a lot of pace,” said van de Ven, “but Van Dijk and Ake have a lot of pace too, and I’m sure they can handle him.”

The Dutch are aware of the criticism England manager Gareth Southgate has received for his tactics. Van de Ven took a slight jab at their style of play, suggesting they play defensively.

“We understand they’ve been criticized by the media,” he said, “but they’re in the semi-finals, which says a lot about their team. However, I believe they play defensively. We’ll analyze them properly, but they definitely have quality.”

Van de Ven expects a high-intensity match with both teams playing at a fast pace. “Hopefully, we’ll have more possession than England so they’re forced to do the running,” he concluded.