Netherlands vs Iceland: Preview and Prediction

Netherlands will face off against an Iceland side that shocked England as they finalise UEFA Euro 2024 preparations.

As UEFA Euro 2024 approaches, the Netherlands will face Iceland in a friendly match at Rotterdam’s Feyenoord Stadium on Monday night. Ronald Koeman’s Dutch side, fresh off a decisive 4-0 win over Canada, are fine-tuning their preparations for the upcoming European Championships.

This recent victory was part of a solid run, with the team winning five out of their last six games. Their performance against Canada demonstrated a strong attacking flair and defensive discipline, boosting their confidence as they head into a challenging Euro 2024 group that includes Poland, Austria, and France.

While not widely favoured to win the Euros, the Netherlands have a storied history in the competition, having lifted the trophy in 1988 and reaching the semi-finals on three other occasions. Their current form and historical success make them a team to watch in the tournament.

In their past encounters, the Netherlands have largely dominated Iceland, winning nine of the twelve matches between the two teams. However, Iceland won the last two fixtures during the Euro 2016 qualifiers,while also surprising England earlier this week. While favourites on paper, the Oranje cannot take the result for granted.

Although they won’t be participating in Euro 2024, Iceland have shown good form recently, winning four of their last five matches. Managed by Age Hareide, they have a reputation for being well-organised and disciplined on the field. The match against the Netherlands will be another opportunity for them to test their tactics and resilience.

The Netherlands, playing at home, will be aiming to continue their strong form and secure a victory. Iceland, fresh from their win over England, will seek to use this game as a learning experience and possibly pull off another upset.

Given their recent performances and historical dominance, the Netherlands are expected to have the upper hand. However, Iceland’s recent success against England suggests they could provide a stiff challenge, making this friendly an exciting prelude to the upcoming tournaments for both teams. The Hard Tackle delves into the potential elevens and tactics for this clash.

Team News & Tactics


Ronald Koeman is expected to rotate his squad from the lineup that convincingly defeated Canada. In defense, Nathan Ake, Denzel Dumfries, and captain Virgil van Dijk are all likely to return to the starting XI, bringing their experience and stability to the backline.

Frenkie de Jong’s availability remains uncertain due to an ankle injury that sidelined him at the end of the previous season. Should de Jong be rested as a precaution, Teun Koopmeiners is expected to step into the midfield, offering his versatility and composure on the ball. The Atalanta man has been a reliable presence for the national team and will be looking to solidify his place ahead of the Euros.

In the attacking department, Memphis Depay, the squad’s leading scorer with 45 international goals, is set to lead the line. Depay’s ability to create and finish chances makes him a crucial asset for the Oranje. He could be partnered in the attack by Cody Gakpo, who continues to impress.

Meanwhile, Xavi Simons is expected to make an appearance. Although he remained on the bench against Canada, the PSG star is expected to get valuable playing time against Iceland. A star on thew rise, he could take the tournament by storm this summer.

The Oranje are expected to line up in a 4-3-3 formation, with Bart Verbruggen in goal. He should be protected by the back four of Micky van de Ven, Nathan Ake, skipper Virgil van Dijk, and Denzel Dumfries. Koopmeiners should be jopined in midfield by former Liverpool man Georginio Wijnaldum and current Liverpool star Ryan Gravenberch.

Jeremie Frimpong should start on the right wing, with Cody Gakpo occupying the other flank. Memphis Depay should lead the line upfront.  The friendly against Iceland offers Koeman an opportunity to assess his options and finalise his plans before the tournament. With the blend of seasoned campaigners and emerging stars, the Netherlands will look to build on their recent form and head into the Euros with momentum and confidence.

Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Verbruggen; van de Ven, Ake, van Dijk, Dumfries; Koopmeiners, Wijnaldum, Gravenberch; Frimpong, Depay, Gakpo

Netherlands vs Iceland: Preview and Prediction.


Age Hareide might stick with the same starting eleven that pulled off a remarkable 1-0 victory against England, as there are no reported injury concerns ahead of their clash with the Netherlands. Jon Dagur Thorsteinsson, who netted the decisive goal against the Three Lions and missed another significant chance in the second half, is expected to retain his role in the attack, likely partnering with Andri Gudjohnsen at the forefront.

Johann Berg Gudmundsson, a veteran presence in the squad, is set to make his 93rd international appearance, anchoring the midfield. His experience and leadership are invaluable to a relatively youthful Iceland side. In the heart of the midfield, Ajax prodigy Kristian Hlynsson will be eager to add to his international experience and will be familiar with several of the Oranje stars on the night.

This friendly offers Iceland a platform to build on their recent positive performances and to continue their momentum. Iceland will be keen to test themselves against a formidable Dutch side as they aim to further their development and readiness for future competitions, including the UEFA Nations League.

A 4-2-3-1 formation appears to be the way forward for the visitors with Hakon Valdimarsson in goal. He should be protected by the backline of Bjarki Steinn Bjarkason, Sverrir Ingi Ingason, Daníel Leo Gretarsson and Kolbeinn Finnsson.

Arnor Ingvi Traustason and Johann Berg Gudmundsson should hold the fort in the middle of the park, freeing up Mikael Anderson, Hakon Arnar Haraldsson and Jon Dagur Thorsteinsson to support Andri Gudjohnsen upfront.

Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Valdimarsson; Bjarkason, Ingason, Gretarsson, Finnsson; Traustason, Gudmundsson; Anderson, Haraldsson, Thorsteinsson; A Gudjohnsen

Netherlands vs Iceland: Preview and Prediction.

Key Stats

  • Netherlands have largely dominated Iceland, winning nine of the twelve matches between the two teams.
  • A win on the night will see Iceland defeat the Oranje for the third match in a row.
  • Iceland have not scored in six of the 12 games agaist Netherlands.
  • The Netherlands have failed to score in their last two games against Iceland.

Player to Watch

Jon Dagur Thorsteinsson

Embed from Getty Images

The 25-year-old scored the winner against England at Wembley and will hope to silence yet another European powerhouse this time around. A skilful player who can cause much damage on his day, he will hope to occupy the gaps left by the attacking minded Dumfries on the Dutch right flank.

Koeman will be aware that his side has the tendency to get caught out at times and will hope Thorsteinsson will not be afforded the opportunity to get behind his side’s backline.


Netherlands 2-1 Iceland

While Iceland did well against England, there is every reason to believe they will be tired for this game, especially if the same playing XI is selected. The Netherlands have considerable strength in depth and with home support to boot will eb a formidable adversary. The Hard Tackle predicts a win for the Oranje.

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