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 Posted by PA Sport
Jun 18, 2014

Van Gaal impressed with Australia

ESPN's expert panel discusses the talking points of Netherlands' second win of the World Cup, which didn't come easily against Australia.

Netherlands coach Louis van Gaal admitted Australia had caused his side serious problems during Wednesday's 3-2 victory.

- Honigstein: Dutch courage against Socceroos
- Brooks: Australia gain belief but no points
Postecoglou draws positives from loss

Australia battled back from an Arjen Robben goal to take a 2-1 lead, but Robin van Persie and Memphis Depay turned it around to ensure the Dutch made it two wins out of two in Group B.

"I felt Australia in the first half were the most dominating team," Van Gaal told his postmatch news conference. "There was much more pressure on the ball in the second half."

AustraliaAustralia
NetherlandsNetherlands
2
3
FT
Match 20
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He insisted that his formation had no impact on Netherlands' poor first 45 minutes.

"If you lose possession of the ball so simply, it doesn't matter what system you play," he added. "I wanted to change the players' mindset in the second half and fortunately it turned out OK, but it just as well could have turned out differently.

"I have to congratulate the team. In the second half, we had five, six, seven opportunities that we created. Our goalkeeper didn't have to stop as many shots."

Van Gaal said he was impressed with the way Ange Postecoglou's Socceroos had performed.

"I believe Australia are a tough team to play and is well-organised," he said. "Their coach allows his team to play an attacking game and he played the strategy he used in previous matches with his players. But I was surprised at the careless loss of ball possession on our part, but that was facilitated by the pressure from Australia."

Despite the win, there were negatives for Netherlands, with Robin van Persie picking up a booking that rules him out of the final group game against Chile and Bruno Martins Indi stretchered off following a Tim Cahill challenge.

"Bruno Martins Indi's first diagnosis was that it was a concussion, but you can never see that from the outside," Van Gaal said. "If it turns out to be a concussion, then he won't able to play the next match."

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