Manager Michael O'Neill admits NI were outclassed by Dutch

Robin van Persie heads in the first of the six goals scored by the Netherlands aganst Northern Ireland
Robin van Persie heads in the first of the six goals scored by the Netherlands aganst Northern Ireland

Manager Michael O'Neill admitted Northern Ireland were clearly outclassed in Saturday's 6-0 defeat by the Netherlands at Amsterdam Arena.

"It was difficult for our inexperienced side against one of the favourites to win the Euro 2012," said O'Neill.

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Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill on the 6-0 defeat by the Netherlands.

"The players have had just three days' training in five or six weeks so it is unfair to expect too much of them.

"Our back four had never played together but they stuck to their task against a quality Dutch attack."

O'Neill said he expected to have a much stronger squad assembled for the 15 August friendly against Finland in Belfast.

"You always want to pick from your full squad," added the NI boss.

"We had eight or nine of our first choice stars not available tonight and the onus was on the players coming in to show how they could perform in this situation.

"It was difficult for us being a bit off the pace against a team who were right on top of their game.

"We took a bit of a spanking, no doubt about that, but we'll lick our wounds and deal with that."

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