Vauxhall Under-19 International Challenge Match
Scotland 1-2 The Netherlands
Monday, 10th September 2012, kick-off 7.30pm
The Falkirk Stadium, Falkirk
Davey 86'; Menig 11', Boetius 67'
Scotland under-19s held their own but ultimately suffered a narrow loss against a slick Netherlands side at The Falkirk Stadium.
‘Best v Best’ is the mantra of the Scottish FA's Dutch performance director Mark Wotte, and tonight his side tested themselves at the highest level.
Seven of the Netherlands squad were UEFA Under-17 European champions.
Impressive finishes from Queensy Menig and Jean-Paul Boetius sealed the win for the vistors, despite a header from Chelsea's Alex Davey giving Scotland added impetus with minutes remaining.
Stuart Findlay almost grabbed the equaliser with a long-range effort in stoppage time, but De Jong tipped over the bar.
The hosts equalled their opponent’s composed play in the opening exchanges, with players such as Celtic's Marcus Fraser and Rangers' Lewis Macleod clearly benefitting from first team experience at their clubs.
It was the Oranje who took the lead. Menig slotted expertly past Jack Hamilton from ten yards after nice link-up play with Thom Haye.
The Scots rallied. Matthew Kennedy, in his first visit home since signing for Everton, displayed his Premiership credentials with a mazy dart in from the left, but his shot swerved wide.
Confidence oozed through the Dutch ranks, with Chelsea player Nathan Ake the stand-out.
Barrie McKay produced Scotland's best piece of play in the first half with a visionary through-ball for Islam Feruz.
John Herron got in on the act with a cute turn, but he sent the ball narrowly wide.
Scotland's creative outlets Feruz and Kennedy were interrupted as the relentless rain casued the ball to skid on the wet surface.
Feruz may lack height but he more than makes up for it in strength and tenacity. He won, and then took, a free-kick in the opening of the second half but his effort hit the wall.
The Dutch were ready to punce on any error, and Scotland's inability to close down Boetius allowed him to place a low left shot past Hamilton to make it 2-0.
Declan McManus delivered a teasing cross from the right which narrowly missed the diving header of Dundee United’s Ryan Gauld as Scotland pressed forward.
Davey provided an exciting finale when he headed home a cross from Stephen Kingsley, playing at his home stadium.
Scotland: Hamilton (Gk), Paterson (Davey 81), Fraser (Cpt), Findlay, Chalmers (Kingsley 63), Macleod, McKay (Reilly 46), Petrie (Gauld 68), Feruz (McManus 63), Herron (Lindsay 81), Kennedy (Erwin 73).
Subs not used: Anderson (Gk)
The Netherlands: De Jong (GK), Disveld, Gravenberch, Kongolo, Woudenberg, Ake (Cpt), Boetius, Haye, Menig, Keskin, de Bondt.
Subs: Koch (GK), Roshuevel, Dogan, de Vilhena, van der Hart, Mahi, Achahbar.