MX23RW : Sunday, December 9 22:25:35

Result: Netherlands fall short of World Cup playoffs in Sweden win

Arjen Robben scores twice as Netherlands beat Sweden 2-0 at the Amsterdam ArenA, but it is the Scandinavians who secure a place in the playoffs for the World Cup.

Netherlands have failed to qualify for the 2018 World Cup despite a 2-0 win over Sweden tonight.

Arjen Robben tried to single-handedly drag the Dutch to Russia but they fell well short of the improbable seven-goal victory that they needed to make the playoffs.

Sweden finish their Group A campaign as runners-up to France, who edged past Belarus 2-1 this evening, and will battle for a place in the tournament next month.

Robben got the Dutch dreaming of a miracle when he put them 1-0 ahead on 16 minutes, thanks to a helping hand from Manchester United defender Victor Lindelof.

The Sweden centre-back hooked a clearance into his own arm, and the 33-year-old Bayern Munich winger fortuitously scuffed the spot kick past Robin Olsen with a miscued panenka.

On a night when the hosts had to take every half-chance to keep their World Cup hopes alive, Georginio Wijnaldum squandered a golden opportunity when he poked wide from 12 yards out on 25 minutes.

Kenny Tete was guilty of spurning an even better opening on 37 minutes when Ryan Babel whipped an excellent ball across the six-yard box, which the young full-back blazed over the crossbar with a rash finish.

Robben grabbed the Dutch a second before the break with an outstanding first-time effort from Babel's cutback, meeting the ball ferociously with his left foot and bending it inside the far post.

Netherlands ideally needed a three or four goal advantage at half time to really rattle the Swedes, who took the life out of their opponents by surviving the opening 20 minutes of the second period without scare.

The visitors showed no attacking ambition of their own and only had one clear-cut opening throughout the entire contest, when in-form striker Marcus Berg headed straight at Jasper Cillessen from an early set piece.

However, their 8-0 thrashing of Luxembourg at the weekend meant that all the Swedes had to do was avoid a horrific capitulation to finish above the Netherlands on goal difference, and they saw the game out comfortably despite the best efforts of Robben, on what may prove to be his international swansong.

Sweden will find out their opponents in the playoffs next Tuesday and are likely to be unseeded for the draw.

Share this article now:
Netherlands' midfielder Arjen Robben (L) celebrates with Netherlands' midfielder Daley Blind (R) after scoring Netherlands' second goal during the international friendly football match between Wales and Netherlands at Cardiff City Stadium in south Wales o
Read Next:
Robben: 'Netherlands have no chance'
>

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel
Premier League
Scottish Premiership
La Liga
Bundesliga
Serie A
Ligue 1
Copa Libertadores
Eredivisie
Primeira Liga
Russian Premier League
Belgian Pro League
Argentine Primera Division
Segunda Division
2.Bundesliga
Serie B
Greek Superleague
Swiss Super League
Turkish Super Lig
Ukrainian Premier League
Indian I-League
Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool1613303462842
2Manchester CityMan City1613214593641
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs16120430161436
4Chelsea16104233132034
5Arsenal16104235201534
6Manchester UnitedMan Utd167542826226
7Everton156542117423
8Bournemouth167272526-123
9Leicester CityLeicester166462120122
10Wolverhampton WanderersWolves166461719-222
11West Ham UnitedWest Ham166372325-221
12Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton166371922-321
13Watford156271821-320
14Cardiff CityCardiff1642101530-1514
15Newcastle UnitedNewcastle163491322-913
16Crystal Palace1633101323-1012
17Burnley1633101532-1712
18Huddersfield TownHuddersfield1624101027-1710
19Southampton161691330-179
20Fulham1623111640-249

Subscribe to our Newsletter


Transfer Talk Daily
Match previews - twice weekly
Morning Briefing (7am UTC)
Ultra close-up image of Kevin De Bruyne [NOT FOR USE IN ARTICLES]Get the latest transfer news, match previews and news direct to your inbox!

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Loading ...

Failed to load data.

Select and display your favourite team's news and scores in this panel
Login, I already have my ad-free pass
Log in to customise Sports Mole
Buy ad-free access (show me the options)
Buy monthly ad-free access for £1.20/month
Buy yearly ad-free access for £12 (2 months free)
Settings - Logout - Manage your account
Settings - Logout - Manage your account