The Group E winner will be decided on Thursday afternoon when the Netherlands and Canada meet for the top spot in the group. Canada like their chances here as they have yet to lose to the Dutch (9-3-0 all-time) in international play, but the Netherlands have an advantage. These teams are level on goal differential, yet the Netherlands would win the group in the event of a draw by way of scoring one more goal than Canada in the previous two matches.
Netherlands vs. Canada
- Date and Time: June 20, 2019, 12 p.m. ET
- Location: Stade Auguste-Delaune, Reims, France
- US Television Coverage: FOX
- Betting Line: Netherlands PK -128, O/U 2.5
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Defense has been the key for Canada this calendar year, and the Canadians have been more stingy than any other team in the world in 2019. Canada allowed just one goal in nine games prior to the beginning of the World Cup, frustrating top teams like England, Sweden, Norway, and Spain.
That has continued to be their hallmark at the World Cup. They did not allow a shot on goal against Cameroon and held the ball for 74 percent of the match in a 1-0 victory. Kadeisha Buchanan scored the game’s only goal just before halftime, and Canada shut it down after the break.
On Saturday, Canada were unable to find the back of the net in the first half, but Jessie Fleming and Nichelle Prince scored in the second half in a 2-0 win. New Zealand managed just two shots in the match and neither attempt was on frame.
The Netherlands are making just their second appearance at the World Cup, yet they have come along in leaps and bounds. They won the 2017 European Championship, and they are one of the most exciting teams in this competition.
The Dutch nearly were forced to settle for a scoreless draw in their opener against New Zealand, but Jill Roord scored in injury time to give the Netherlands a 1-0 victory.
They had an easier time against Cameroon, as Vivianne Miedema netted on both sides of the halftime whistle and Dominique Bloodworth added another tally in a 3-1 victory. Their daring style of football was on display there, and they will look to replicate that performance against Canada.
Netherlands Player to Watch
Lieke Martens has not scored in either match, but her presence has been felt. She made a sensational Cruyff Turn in the opener against New Zealand, and her proclivity to dart through defenses will put Canada’s stingy back line on notice. Martens is an elite dribbler, and she can finish too. She has 42 goals in over 100 appearances with the national team.
Canada Player to Watch
With a goal in France, Christine Sinclair will tie Marta as the second player to score in five different World Cups. She is the greatest player in Canadian history, and this is likely to be Sinclair’s last World Cup at the age of 36. Her 283 caps and 181 goals for Canada are unlikely to ever be topped, and the only thing missing for Sinclair is a World Cup win.
Netherlands vs. Canada Free Picks
These teams play very different styles, and it should be fun to watch the contrast in play. I love the under in this match though. Canada just doesn’t allow goals, but that’s not necessarily a problem for the Dutch as a draw will give them first place in the group. Chances will be few and far between.
Netherlands vs. Canada Prediction: Netherlands 1, Canada 1
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