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Netherlands Stage Comeback to Beat Turkey and Secure Euro Semifinal Spot

In a thrilling quarterfinal match of the Euro 2024, the Netherlands managed a dramatic comeback against Turkey to win 2-1 and secure a semifinal meeting with England. The decisive moment came in the 76th minute when Turkish defender Mert Müldür inadvertently bundled the ball into his own net under pressure from Dutch forward Cody Gakpo, sealing the victory for the Netherlands.

The match, held at the Olympiastadion, was intense from the start. Turkey had the upper hand in the first half, with Samet Akaydin scoring a header in the 35th minute following a perfectly executed cross by teenager Arda Güler. The goal was set up by a series of Turkish attacks that capitalized on a defensive misjudgment by Dutch fullback Denzel Dumfries, who allowed the ball to go out for a corner instead of clearing it.

Despite a shaky start, the Netherlands regrouped after halftime. Dutch coach Ronald Koeman’s strategic decision to introduce Wout Weghorst at the beginning of the second half added a physical presence to the Dutch attack. However, Turkey continued to apply pressure, with Güler’s free-kick hitting the post and Dutch goalkeeper Bart Verbruggen making crucial saves.

The turning point for the Netherlands came in the 70th minute when Memphis Depay’s cross found Stefan de Vrij, who headed home the equalizer. Buoyed by this goal, the Dutch intensified their efforts. Just six minutes later, Dumfries delivered a cross that led to Müldür’s own goal under pressure from Gakpo, completing the Netherlands’ comeback.

The Turkish team, fueled by the passionate support of their fans, made valiant efforts to equalize. However, the Dutch defense, bolstered by Verbruggen’s excellent goalkeeping, held firm. Turkey’s attempts in the final minutes, including a key save by Verbruggen in stoppage time, were not enough to change the outcome.

With this victory, the Netherlands advance to the semifinals, where they will face England in Dortmund on Wednesday. The other semifinal will see France and Spain clash on Tuesday, completing the lineup for the final four of Euro 2024.

This match, the only quarterfinal to avoid extra time or penalties, was no less dramatic. It showcased the resilience and determination of the Dutch team as they overcame early setbacks to secure a crucial win.

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