On Friday, the Netherlands and Ecuador will face off in a match that is part of the World Cup and will determine who will win first place in Group A. Both teams have only faced each other twice before in international friendlies, both of which were close contests that ended in a draw and a victory for the Netherlands. This will be the first time that the group rivals face each other at a World Cup. In the first game of the group stage, Ecuador defeated the tournament hosts Qatar by a score of 2-0. The Netherlands defeated Senegal in their opening match, gaining victory with a score of 2-0. The earlier victories mean that there is only one game left in the group stage play, and if either team wins that game, they will claim first place. Here are our storylines, information on how you can watch the match, and other relevant information. While you’re here, join up for our new newsletter that will cover the “beautiful game” in all its guises, including daily updates about the World Cup, her, and other tournaments.
What to look out for and the odds
- This event will take place on Friday, November 25, at 11 a.m. Eastern Time.
- The Khalifa International Stadium can be found here.
- FOX and Telemundo on television; fuboTV for live streaming (Try for free)
- Odds: NET -129; DRAW +245; ECU +380 (via Caesars Sportsbook)
Reports from the team
Netherlands: Cody Gakpo scored the game-winning goal for the Netherlands in the 84th minute of their match against Senegal. This was the first victory for the Netherlands in this tournament. Davy Klaassen scored an insurance goal late in the game during stoppage time to ensure that all three points would be earned, but the squad will need to get out to a faster start against Ecuador if they are to take first place. It is likely that Gakpo will add to his goal-scoring total, while Virgil van Dijk will ensure that the Netherlands suppresses any counterattacks that Ecuador may attempt.
Ecuador: Enner Valencia was the man with a strategy during Ecuador’s opening triumph against Qatar. The 33-year-old attacker converted from the penalty spot and put away a header with a superbly timed move for the 2-0 win. The team has a fearlessness about them and isn’t afraid to run directly at defenses. Valencia has to be dealt with, and he makes it hard, and if left-back Pervis Estupinan can stay inventive on the flank, Ecuador might upset the tournament.
A goal scored by the Netherlands just before halftime sets the stage for an exciting second half, but heroics in the final minutes of the game ensure that they will come out on top once again.