Norway, led by their striker Erling Haaland, held coach Louis van Gaal's Netherlands in check (1-1) on Tuesday in Oslo, leaving Turkey at the top of Group G.
Turkey, forced to share by Montenegro 2-2 at the same time, have eight points after four games for seven units in the Netherlands and Norway, while the first of the group will directly qualify for the next World Cup .
In Olso, the Netherlands fell on a bone: Haaland.
Who else ?
It was the Borussia Dortmund striker who opened the scoring in the 20th minute.
In finesse, he deceived Justin Bijlow, the tenured goalkeeper in the Dutch eleven.
Norwegian striker Erling Haaland opens the scoring against the Netherlands, during the qualifying match for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, September 1, 2021 in Oslo Terje Bendiksby NTB / AFP
Georginio Wijnaldum and his teammates then procrastinated, losing the thread of the match, until the equalizer signed Davy Klaassen in the 37th minute.
Enough to revive previously uninspired Oranje?
Dutch striker Memphis Depay congratulates midfielder Davy Klaassen after his equalizer (1-1), during the qualifying match for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar, September 1, 2021 in Oslo Fredrik Varfjell NTB / AFP
Louis van Gaal, who led the Netherlands in Oslo for the first time since the announcement of his retirement five years ago, had undoubtedly dreamed of a better comeback.
Already at the head of the Oranje between 2000 and 2001 then between 2012 and 2014, the Batavian coach is already up against the wall when he announced a few days ago "to have returned to win the World Cup-2022 in Qatar".
It was without counting on Haaland who was a poison for the Dutch defense in which the "tower" of Liverpool Virgil Van Dijk appeared particularly feverish and often taken up speed.
Dutch defender Virgil van Dijk tackles Norwegian striker Erling Haaland during the 2022 World Cup qualifying match in Qatar on September 1, 2021 in Oslo Stian Lysberg Solum NTB / AFP
For the start of his third term at the head of the Oranje selection, Louis Van Gaal (70) has never found the solution in the face of a very regrouped Nordic defense.
Memphis Depay and his teammates multiplied the long balls while they were largely in deficit compared to their strong opponents.
"I came back, not for myself, but to help the Netherlands win the World Cup," Van Gaal said during the week.
The Dutch coach has work to do.
We will first have to win the next two matches against Montenegro on September 4 in Amsterdam and Turkey on September 7 in Eindhoven.
Failure would be terrible for a manager who can count on a superb generation with Van Dijk, De Ligt, De Jong, Wijnaldum and other Depay.
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