De Boer quits as Netherlands coach after loss to Czechs

AP , Tuesday 29 Jun 2021

The Dutch lost to the Czech Republic 2-0 on Sunday in the round of 16

Frank de Boer
Netherlands' coach Frank de Boer waves at the end of the UEFA EURO 2020 Group C football match between North Macedonia and the Netherlands at Johan Cruyff Arena in Amsterdam, June 29, 2021. AFP

Frank de Boer quit as coach of the Netherlands on Tuesday following the team's elimination from the European Championship.

The Dutch lost to the Czech Republic 2-0 on Sunday in the round of 16 after winning their first three group matches at Euro 2020. De Boer and the Dutch soccer federation had set a goal of reaching at least the quarterfinals.

``I have decided not to continue as national coach,`` De Boer said in a statement released by the federation. ``The goal was not reached, that is clear.''

De Boer faced fierce criticism after the loss to the Czechs because of his decision to abandon the traditional Dutch formation of four defenders, three midfielders and three forwards.

De Boer had only been in the job since September. He took over from Ronald Koeman after he left to join Barcelona.

De Boer said pressure on him since the loss had increased ``and that is not a healthy situation for me or the squad'' as it prepares to resume qualifying for next year's World Cup. The Netherlands will play at Norway on Sept. 1 in Oslo.

De Boer was appointed to the Dutch job about two months after he left Atlanta United following a poor re-start to the MLS season, with the team losing all three of its group games at the MLS Is Back tournament in Florida.

De Boer had a successful start to his management career at Ajax, winning four straight league titles from 2011-14.

But he was fired in 2016 after only 85 days in charge of Inter Milan and lasted just 10 weeks at Crystal Palace in 2017 before being ousted after the team lost its first four Premier League games without scoring a goal.

No replacement was immediately announced for De Boer.

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