With their clubs floundering, Dutch squad omits Premier League trio ahead of France friendly

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With coach Louis van Gaal previously stating the Netherlands friendly with France is a player’s last chance to make the World Cup roster, there seems to be some chaos at the goalkeeping position.

As both Newcastle and Fulham struggle in their recent Premier League play, netminders Tim Krul and Maarten Stekelenburg have been left out of the squad entirely.

The pair were among 10 players sliced from a preliminary squad by van Gaal.

Named in their stead is Swansea’s Michel Vorm – who would now appear to be the World Cup favorite – along with Ajax’s 24-year-old Jasper Cillessen and 23-year-old PSV stopper Jeroen Zoet.

Cillessen has been especially impressive, conceding just seven goals in 17 Eredivisie matches and 19 goals in 25 matches overall this season including time in the Champions League and Europa League.

Also left out was Swansea midfielder Jonathan de Guzman, who has been in and out of Swansea’s starting XI of late, managing to last the full 90 minutes just once in his last five appearances.

The omissions do not necessarily mean these players’ chances of making the squad for the World Cup is over, as van Gaal also handed debuts to three Dutch attackers and is likely seeking to learn more about youngsters and fill his final spots rather than name a complete squad.

However, it would certainly serve as a warning to the three players, especially the two goalkeepers, that their spot is not guaranteed.  Stekelenburg and Krul have battled for the goalkeeping slot often throughout the past few years along with Swansea’s Michel Vorm, who was included in the squad.

Van Gaal handed debuts to three attackers in his squad, including Cillessen’s 21-year-old Ajax teammate Davy Klassen along with Twente winger Quincy Promes and Feyenoord’s Jean-Paul Boetius.

Also notably left out was Newcastle striker Luuk De Jong, but given his inability to break into the Borussia Monchengladbach squad before his loan to Newscastle, it’s no real surprise.

The match with France is scheduled for Wednesday, March 5th.

MLS Snapshot: Orlando City SC 2-1 Montreal Impact

Cyle Larin, Orlando City SC

The game in 100 words (or less): For weeks, it was a widely held belief that the Montreal Impact would snatch up the sixth and final playoff place in the Eastern Conference with little or no resistance from their opposition. As they went six games unbeaten (four wins), all looked to be setting up perfect for the club that fired Frank Klopas midseason, but there was another team in the race for sixth that kept winning themselves: Orlando City SC. On Saturday night, Montreal and Orlando City faced off at the Citrus, with the expansion Lions claiming their fourth-straight victory with a 2-1 triumph. Montreal now holds a one-point lead on Orlando in the race for sixth, and have two games in hand, but it’s no longer a foregone conclusion L’Impact will qualify for the playoffs no resistance whatsoever.

[ MORE: | Week 30 TOTW | POTW ]

Three moments that mattered

33′ — Bush’s mistake gifts Larin the opening goal — Larin did what your taught to do as a striker — “put it on frame, test the goalkeeper” — but in no universe does a shot so feeble have any business finding the back of the net. Evan Bush has been great this year. Hopefully (for Montreal’s sake), this howler doesn’t turn into the yips with the playoffs looming.

43′ — Hall’s “mistake” gifts Oduro an equalizer — Dominic Oduro equalized in the 43rd minute, when he took the ball out of the hands of Tally Hall and smashed it into the back of the net, but the goal should have been disallowed due to Hall having full control of the ball.

80′ — Hines hits the winner for Orlando — Seb Hines put the ball back into the mixer and just so happened to find the back of the net in the 80th minute. Sometimes that’s all it takes.

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Man of the match: Seb Hines

Goalscorers: Larin (33′), Oduro (43′), Hines (80′)

MLS Snapshot: NY Red Bulls 2-1 Columbus Crew SC

Bradley Wright-Phillips, New York Red Bulls
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The game in 100 words (or less): Two weeks in a row Columbus Crew SC have had a chance to go top of the Eastern Conference with a victory, and two weeks in a row Crew SC have failed to take a single point from massively important fixtures. Their latest defeat, a 2-1 humbling at the hands of the East-leading New York Red Bulls, started so well for Gregg Berhalter’s side, but was undone by a pair of costly, comedic defensive errors that allowed Lloyd Sam and Bradley Wright-Phillips (15th of the season) to erase an early deficit (Justin Meram) and win all three points. The result not only keeps the Red Bulls top of the East, but gives them a three- and four-point cushion with three and two games in hand on their nearest competitors., D.C. United and New England Revoltion respectively. For Crew SC, they’re four points back of the Red Bulls in fourth place, one point ahead of fifth-place Toronto FC, who have a game in hand.

[ MORE: | Week 30 TOTW | POTW ]

Three moments that mattered

9′ — Meram pokes it past Robles for an early lead — Meram “earned” his goal all the way back in midfield, when the Iraqi international’s mazy run took a routine turnover inside Crew SC’s defensive half and turned it into a dangerous counter-attacking opportunity. Harrison Afful overlapped and provided the cross for Meram to send home.

12′ — Sam capitalizes on multiple mistakes to equalize — Crew SC pass the ball out of the back. They don’t boot it forward to clear. It’s just what they do. Sometimes, that’ll bite you. When your goalkeeper and right back both have blunders clearing the ball 10 seconds apart, you probably deserve to concede an ugly, scrappy goal.

21′ — Wright-Phillips capitalizes on more defensive gaffes — See the above description for Red Bulls goal no. 1.

[ FOLLOW: All of PST’s MLS coverageStandings | Stats | Schedule ]

Man of the match: Damien Perrinelle

Goalscorers: Meram (9′), Sam (12′), Wright-Phillips (21′)