Good evening and thank you for joining Sports Mole
for tonight’s live commentary of the World Cup
qualifying clash between the Netherlands
and Hungary in Amsterdam.
The Netherlands have already secured their spot at next summer's World Cup finals but Hungary have everything to play for tonight and will be desperate for a win.
The two countries have met four times since 2010, with the Dutch winning 6-1, 4-0, 5-3, and most recently 4-1 in the reverse fixture last September.
Despite their poor record against the Dutch, the visitors go into this game having won their previous Group D match 5-1 against Estonia.
If Hungary are to cause an upset tonight against the Dutch, they will have to beat a team who have won seven of their eight matches in Group D and have not lost a World Cup qualifier since 2001, when the Republic of Ireland claimed a famous 1-0 win in Dublin.
It will no doubt be a nervy night for Hungary fans as they sweat on the results of Turkey and Romania. The Romanians must be considered the favourites out of the three teams to make the playoffs as they face Group D's bottom two Estonia and pointless Andorra in their final games.
The team news has been announced and the good news for the Netherlands is that Robin van Persie
is fit enough to start after recovering from a toe injury. Louis van Gaal
has named a strong side tonight that includes experienced internationals Arjen Robben
, Rafael van der Vaart
and Nigel de Jong
NETHERLANDS XI Vorm Janmaat, Bruma, Vlaar, Blind, Strootman, De Jong, Van der Vaart, Robben, Van Persie, Lens
HUNGARY XI Bogdan, Guzmics, Vanczak, Kadar, Dzsudzsak, Varga, Koman, Nemeth, Bode, Hajnal, Korcsmar
While the Dutch side boasts a number of household names, you would be forgiven for not knowing too much about the players starting for Hungary tonight. Adam Bogdan and Jozsef Varga will be familiar to fans of Bolton and Middlesbrough.
Netherlands captain Van Persie could become his country’s all-time top goalscorer tonight. He currently has 38 international goals to his name, just two behind former Barcelona man Patrick Kluivert
. Even if he doesn’t manage it today, I’m sure he’ll have broken the record by the time his team touch down in Brazil next June.
Although it may seem that the Dutch have nothing to play for tonight having already qualified for next summer’s tournament, they will be desperate to earn crucial FIFA ranking points in order to be seeded for the group stages. The current top eight teams are Spain, Argentina, Germany, Italy, Colombia, Belgium, Uruguay as well as the hosts Brazil.
PREDICTION: Even though Hungary are desperate to claim all three points tonight, it would take a sensational display to end the home side’s incredible record in qualifying. The hosts have too much quality in their team and the Hungarian defence will struggle to deal with the class of Arjen Robben and Robin van Persie. I’m going to go for a 2-1 victory for the Netherlands.
The players are making their way out to the pitch with a sea of Orange in the stands of the Amsterdam ArenA awaiting them.
We are just minutes away from kickoff as the national anthem's of each side ring out around the stadium. The roof is closed tonight creating an even more intimidating atmosphere for the away side.
Our referee for the evening is Martin Atkinson.
KICKOFF! The Netherlands get us underway.
Robben looks lively and has won the Dutch an early corner after getting onto the end of a long ball.
CHANCE! Bruma has a header cleared off the line from the resulting corner and after Robben heads it back into the middle, the ball is bundled into the net, but it is not given for an offside.
The home side have started this game strongly pegging the Hungarians into their own half and playing some wonderful free flowing football.
Brilliant play from the Dutch down the right and they have won another corner.
CHANCE! Bogdan came for the cross but made an absolute mess of it. The loose ball dropped to the feet of Van Persie but the defence did just enough to clear the ball.
From the replays it seems like the goal that wasn't given was a harsh decision by the referee, as Robben who headed the ball back into the middle appeared to be onside.
CHANCE! Hungary fashion an opening of their own as Dzsudzsak whips in a free kick to Vorm's near post. The keeper appeared to get a slight touch of the ball but no corner was given.
Van der Vaart nearly squeezes a ball through to Van Persie but the defence cuts it out, and the away side manage to break away and force a corner kick.
From the resulting corner Nemeth thinks he should have a penalty but there was minimal contact if any between him and Lens.
GOAL! Netherlands 1-0 Hungary (Van Persie)
The Dutch take the lead through their captain. Van Persie rises highest in the box to head home a cross by Janmaat from the right and directs it out of the reach of Bogdan.
Van Persie is just one goal away from leveling the Dutch goal scoring record and he looks in good form to do it tonight by the way he and his side are playing.
Nearly another chance for the Dutch as Janmaat crosses another brilliant ball into the box but this time no one can connect
CHANCE! The Dutch have been fantastic and nearly scored a fine team goal. Van der Vaart exchanges passes with Lens who bursts through on goal, but just can't keep his shot down. This is an exhibition of total football from the home side.
GOAL! Netherlands 2-0 Hungary (Strootman)
The Dutch have a second goal and it's Kevin Strootman
who's scored it. This time Lens crosses from the left and the Roma midfielder heads the ball back across Bogdan and into the net. It's no more than they deserve and at this rate they look like scoring every time they come forward.
Robben weaves his way into the box taking on two defenders and wins a corner. It's taken short and from another ball into the box, Lens sees a strike blocked. Hungary look vulnerable every time the Netherlands come forward.
The home side are passing the ball around at will, with no threat from the visitors. It's going to be a very long evening for Hungary if they can't get some sort of foothold in this match.
You have to feel sorry for Hungary here, the back four are just lumping the ball forward every time they get the ball giving the forwards no chance.
GOAL! Netherlands 3-0 Hungary (Lens)
Netherlands are running away with it here. Van der Vaart chips a hopeful pass into the middle, but the Hungary defence can only clear it to Jeremain Lens
who slides the ball home from close range.
HITS THE BAR! That would of been a stunning goal from Van der Vaart, as he curls a beautiful left footed effort against the frame of the goal. Moments later they hit the woodwork again through Janmaat after the full back is slid through on goal by Robben and sees his low effort come back off the post.
CHANCE! Finally the home side threaten the Dutch goal. Hungary win a free kick just outside the box and Dzsudzsak sees his effort parried by Vorm.
GOAL! Netherlands 4-0 Hungary (Van Persie)
Van Persie has joined Kluivert as the all-time top goalscorer of the Dutch national team. It's another headed goal for the striker as he meets Robben's chipped cross from the left and makes no mistake with the header. Van Persie runs over to Kluivert on the Dutch bench to celebrate. What a great moment for him and its another fine team goal!
HALF-TIME: Netherlands 4-0 Hungary
What a fantastic first half of football from the Netherlands. They lead 4-0 at the interval and it could have been much more. Hungary will be desperately dissapointed with the performance they have put in so far and manager Sandor Egervari
will no doubt have some harsh words to say to his team in the dressing room.
The highlight of the half has to be Van Persie celebrating his record equaling goal with Kluivert. Two of the best strikers in Dutch football shared a touching moment and the question now is whether Van Persie can break the record in the second half. With the way his side are playing you would be brave to bet against it.
UPDATE: Here's a look at what's going on in the rest of the Group D games. It's more bad news for Hungary fans I'm afraid as their rivals for the playoff spot, Romania and Turkey, are both winning their fixtures this evening.
Van Persie has taken 80 caps to reach 40 goals, just one more than Kluivert took to reach the same number. I was confident before the game that he would equal or break that record before next summer, but it has been a first class performance from him tonight.
The two sides are back out on the pitch and the second half will be starting shortly.
We are back underway in Amsterdam.
DOUBLE SUBSTITUTION: Szilard Devecseri
and Akos Elek have come on at half time for the visitors.
PENALTY TO HUNGARY!
GOAL! Netherlands 4-1 Hungary (Dzsudzsak)
Balázs Dzsudzsák fires home a penalty sending Vorm the wrong way after Atkinson spotted a handball inside the box. There didn't look much in that but is this the start of an unlikely comeback?
GOAL! Netherlands 5-1 Hungary (Van Persie)
RECORD BREAKER! Van Persie becomes the Netherlands top goalscorer. Robben's ball in from the left is headed down and Van Persie latches onto the knockdown to slot home from inside the box. It's a hat-trick and more importantly 41 goals now for Van Persie in the colours of the national side.
There were doubts over whether Van Persie would even play after struggling with a toe injury all week, but it's turning out to be a night that he will remember for the rest of his life.
CHANCE! Hungary come close to scoring their second of the match through Németh but he sees Vorm push his stinging effort wide.
SUBSTITUTION: Dirk Kuyt comes on and replaces the man of the moment Van Persie, who receives a standing ovation from the crowd.
YELLOW CARD! Németh goes into the book for a foul on De Jong. It wasn't the worst challenge but the Dutch midfielders reaction has ended up getting him a yellow card. De Jong is also shown a card by the referee for his protests.
GOAL! Netherlands 6-1 Hungary (Devecseri own goal)
What a bizarre goal for the visitors to concede! Lens whips in a cross from the left, and with no pressure from any forwards in the middle, substitute Devecseri heads the ball past his own keeper from a yard out.
Hungary are still trying to attack and Nemeth sees a long rage effort fly over, but their defending has not been good enough tonight against world class opposition.
The Netherlands look happy to keep the ball and play out the rest of the game, but it would be no surprise to see them add another goal or two to their tally.
CHANCE! Just as I say that, the Dutch go close again. Robben flicks the ball into the path of Dirk Kuyt but he sees his effort fly wide of the post.
CHANCE! Bogdan comes to Hungary's rescue by denying Van der Vaart from close range after a fine run from Lens before another ball into the middle from Robben causes all manner of problems for the defence, but they just manage to scramble it clear.
Strootman is replaced by Leroy Fer
YELLOW CARD! Guzmics goes into the book for the away side after a hefty challenge on Janmaat. Moments later he barges into the back of Kuyt but escapes any punishment from the referee.
GOAL! Netherlands 7-1 Hungary (Van der Vaart)
The Netherlands are awarded a free kick on the edge of the box and Rafael van der Vaart steps up to curl in a left footed effort. His strike took a huge deflection off the wall to wrong foot Bogdan and in truth it might have been going wide, but I'm sure he'll be claiming that one!
GOAL! Netherlands 8-1 Hungary (Robben)
What a stunning goal this is! Robben wins a free kick in an almost identical position to where Van der Vaart just scored from, and this time he steps up to take it. The Bayern Munich man needed no help with a deflection, as he curls in a beautiful strike into the top left hand corner leaving the keeper with no chance. He's been superb tonight and has fully deserved his goal.
FULL-TIME: Netherlands 8-1 Hungary
What a result for the Netherlands! They have crushed Hungary 8-1 in Amsterdam, with some truly fantastic football played tonight.
To compound a miserable night for the visitors, their hopes of qualifying for the World Cup next year hang on a thread after the results of the other two Group D games. Romania won 4-0 in Andorra and Turkey claimed a 2-0 victory against Estonia. The result's leave Hungary on 14 points, two points behind their rivals for the playoff spot with just one game to go.
As for the Dutch, it was a night to remember and will help them to gain valuable ranking points from FIFA in a bid to be seeded for the World Cup next summer.
Thanks for joining our commentary this evening for what has been a stunning win for the Netherlands. They will go into the next summer's World Cup full of confidence if they can continue to play like they have tonight and Van Persie's record breaking exploits will live long in the memory. Stay with us for the rest of our coverage from this evening's World Cup qualifiers, but from me, it's goodnight.