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Dutchman told to target Manchester City duo against England – Need to be ‘like an animal’

Dutchman told to target Manchester City duo against England – Need to be ‘like an animal’

Brighton and Hove Albion goalkeeper Bart Verbruggen is set to target Manchester City duo Kyle Walker and John Stones if the Netherlands go to a penalty shootout against England tonight.

That’s according to goalkeeper Tim Krul, who urged the Brighton man to target England’s weaker penalty takers and singled out the Manchester City duo in particular.

The Netherlands face England in the Euro 2024 semi-finals tonight after defeating Turkey in a thrilling quarter-final encounter.

Verbruggen played a huge role in that success, making several key saves to help Ronald Koeman’s side progress.

England’s path to the semi-finals was more dramatic, with a late goal from Bukayo Saka to level the match in normal time before winning on penalties.

The Three Lions converted all five of their penalties in impressive fashion while the Swiss failed to convert theirs, with Jordan Pickford saving Manuel Akanji’s spot-kick, the first of the night, to put Gareth Southgate’s side on course for victory.

It meant the Manchester City defender was the unfortunate loser on the night, and Krul believes Verbruggen should have two other City defenders to target should the Brighton man be needed for penalty heroics tonight.

“England committed five fantastic penalties against Switzerland,” he told Algemeen Dagblad, according to Voetbal Primeur.

“Phil Foden, Ivan Toney and Harry Kane are real specialists. You can only expect that with these kids they will strike the ball a little less well. You have to focus on the less experienced takers like John Stones or Kyle Walker. It’s a European Championship semi-final. That brings tension.

“He (Verbruggen) is already a fantastic goalkeeper, I’m sure he’ll be fine. But in any case, make sure you stay on the line like an animal. And don’t forget: the pressure is on the taker. I’m looking forward to the game, although I hope it doesn’t go to penalties.”