Amsterdam, May 27 (IANS) The Dutch football team were left disappointed after a 1-2 loss to Bulgaria here in the first of three friendlies before the start of Euro 2012 championship.
Bulgaria captured the win in injury-time Saturday, handing the Netherlands its third defeat in the last five internationals and the fifth defeat under coach Bert van Marwijk.
Van Marwijk opted for Bundesliga top scorer Klaas-Jan Huntelaar as central striker and gave Premier League top scorer Robin van Persie a right wing position. Wesley Sneijder and Rafael van der Vaart completed the four attacking positions, reported Xinhua.
PSV defender Jetro Willems, who heard he was named in the final Euro 2012 squad earlier Saturday, made his debut. The last debutant who was younger than Willems was Gerald Vanenburg (18 years, 40 days) versus Greece in April 1982.
Just like the rest of the team Willems did not play well in the first half, with the Dutch creating very few chances. The home-team lost central defender Joris Mathijsen, who was substituted by Wilfred Bouma, due to an injury.
Bulgaria was close to the opening goal when Valeri Bojinov hit the crossbar from a free-kick, but on the strike of half-time Holland found the net. Van Persie moved to the center and finished a pass by Sneijder in style.
In the second half Bulgaria equalized after a handball by Rafael van der Vaart, punished with a penalty which was converted by Ivelin Popov in the 50th minute. Ilijan Micanski headed in Bulgaria’s winner in injury-time.