Miedema stars for clinical Dutch

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Kieran Harm
Football and NFL Writer. Specialising in the Premier League and Bundesliga

Vivianne Miedema scored twice to become the Dutch all time record goalscorer as her side secured qualification to the round of 16. They beat a very decent Cameroon side 3-1 in front of 22,000 fans in Valenciennes.

The game started in a very tepid fashion as both sides carefully felt their way into the game. Gabrielle Aboudi Onguene secured her status as pantomime villain early on when she threw a temper tantrum following one of the Dutch girls sportingly handing her a water bottle. However, despite the boos and whistles, Onguene was a constant threat and had the best chance of the opening exchanges as she hit the side netting from close range.

The scoring was opened a few minutes before half-time as Holland demonstrated the slick attacking football we know they can play. Shanice Van de Sanden played a lovely one-two with Jackie Groenen before whipping in a delicious cross right on to the head of Vivianne Miedema. The Arsenal star wasn’t going to miss such a guilt edge chance as the Orange Lionesses took the lead in impressive style.

Miedema celebrated rounding off a brilliant move to equal the Dutch scoring record

Their lead didn’t last long as less than three minutes later, Cameroon struck back. The goal came from a fairly innocuous looking cross-field diagonal -the goalkeeper came for it and was beaten in the air by Onguene as she nodded the ball over the keeper and then poked it home into an empty net.

The second half started much more quickly for the Dutch as they managed to retake their lead pretty much immediately. The second goal came from a free-kick on the right hand side. It looked as though it was going to be lumped into the box but instead it was played slyly down the line to Groenen who delivered a teasing ball into the box. There was a bit of pinball in the area before the ball fell to another Arsenal star in Dominique Bloodworth who had the simple task of turning the ball into an empty net.

From there on, Holland were in total control. Cameroon only really had one great chance as Onguene once again proved herself to be the only source of attacking threat. She did some great work on the right wing, dancing past players before pulling it back for Henriette Akaba to hit. The shot deflected off the leg of the centre-half and flew just wide of the post and out for a corner.

Cameroon were punished for not taking their chances as Miedema added the cherry on top in the 85th minute. Having equalled the all-time goal-scoring record for her country earlier in the game, she then went and smashed that record as she drove into the box before unleashing a powerful effort that beat the keeper at her near post. She now solely holds the record as the all-time leading goalscorer for the Dutch national team at the age of just 22.

The result means that Holland are officially through to the knockout rounds as they have six points from the six available in their two opening games. All is not lost for Cameroon, they are still able to go and secure one of the best third placed team positions, but they’ll need to beat New Zealand next week.

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