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Holland in focus: 2010 World Cup Betting Odds

Posted on 09/03 by T J Dilfer

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During the peak of the nation's football success in the 1970ís, Holland made huge strides in their football history by qualifying for two world cup finals in the decade. Unfortunately on both occasions they failed to bring home the title and lost to host nations West Germany in 1974 in a 2-1 defeat and Argentina in 1978 (3-1) .

The Dutch have made it through to various world cup finals on six other occasions over the years but have yet to realise their potential when it really matters. European Championships have proved a more successful tournament. 1988 saw the Dutch team lift the title which was their first major tournament win and restored them to the forefront of international football. The win was followed by three semi final appearances between 92 and 04.

Holland were the first Europeans to qualify for South Africa 2010 remaining unbeaten throughout the qualifiers and securing a maximum 24 points. So how do the World Cup Betting Odds look for the Netherlands?

There are a number of familiar names from the UKís premier league who will play for their home nation, including Manchester Cityís Nigel de long, Liverpoolís duo Dirk Kuyt and Ryan Babel, and one of the most likely goal scorers of the squad, Arsenals Robin van Persie (who has made a rapid recovery from an ankle injury he received during an international friendly back in November).

Milanís Klaas-Jan Huntelaar is the other one to watch when it comes to goal scoring potential from the Dutch squad. Sportsbet are offering 40/1 on van Persie being the tournaments top goal scorer. Whilst Huntelaar is tipped at 50/1 with Sportsbet. Those of you looking for longer odds can find offering 100/1 on Bayern Munichís Arjen Robben taking home the golden boot award.

The team will be captained by veteran defender Giovanni van Bronckhorst who at 36 is clearly the most experienced player on the squad having previously played for Rangers, Arsenal and currently on a three contract with Feyenoord. Coach Bert van Marwijk also has a history with Feyenoord. During his time with the club he was awarded the UEFA Club Coach title in 2002. Marwijk has been the national coach since 2008 replacing Marco van Basten.

Whilst Holland have a strong midfield in Mark von Pommel (son-in-law of the coach Marwijk) and Rafael van der Vaart plus some clear talent upfront, there does seem to be a concern around the Holland defence. Despite the success of the qualifying rounds - 10/10 with only two goals conceded - there are many out there who are hoping veteran keeper Edwin van der Saar will come out of retirement and join the squad in South Africa.

Holland were drawn in group E alongside Denmark, Cameroon and Japan, and with a FIFA ranking of 3 there is every possibility and expectation that Holland will top their group.

IASbet has them at 4/5 to win the group. Sportsbet are offering 13/2 on them reaching the semis and based on their performance in the qualifiers it may be worth a punt with Centrebet, who are offering 7/1 on Holland being the top European team of the 2010 tournament. Finally have 40/1 odds on a repeat of 78 with a Holland .v. Argentina final, though no doubt the Dutch will be looking for different result.

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