Netherlands Overcome Kazakh Scare in Euro 2016 Qualifier

2014 FIFA World Cup bronze medalists Netherlands had to come from a goal down to defeat Kazakhstan 3-1 in a Euro 2016 qualifying match this evening in Amsterdam.

Renat Abdulin had given the visitors a shock 17th minute lead, a lead which the Kazakhs managed to hold on to till the half-time break.

The Oranje finally found a way back in the game when Schalke 04 striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar equalised just after the hour mark, while Kazakhstan then had a man sent off two minutes after Huntelaar’s goal.

Despite the man advantage, the Dutch had to wait till the 82nd minute before taking the lead through Ibrahim Afellay’s goal before a 90th minute penalty from Robin van Persie sealed the win for the Dutch.

The win was Guus Hiddink’s first in a competitive match as Dutch manager to take his side to third spot with three points after two matches in Group A of qualifying.

The Dutch are behind group leaders Iceland as well as Czech Republic that both maintained their perfect starts with respective wins away at Latvia and Turkey.

Elsewhere in Euro 2016 qualifying this evening, Kevin de Bruyne and Dries Mertens got a brace each for Belgium in the 6-0 demolition of Andorra in their first qualifying match in Group B.

The Belgian Red Devils now lie in second place, just a point behind Wales that have played two matches following a goalless draw with Bosnia-Herzegovina in Cardiff.

In other matches, Italy beat Azerbaijan 2-1 with Juventus defender Giorgio Chiellini scoring all three goals in the Group H qualifier to keep the Azzurri on top with six points, ahead of Croatia on goal difference following a 1-0 win for the Croats at Bulgaria.