Babel says Dutch will turn on style against Brazil

JOHANNESBURG Tue Jun 29, 2010 9:05pm IST

Ryan Babel of the Netherlands runs towards the ball during a friendly match against Ghana ahead of World Cup 2010, in Rotterdam June 1, 2010. Netherlands should finally be able to show off their true style when they face Brazil in the quarter-finals, winger Babel said on Tuesday after growing criticism back home of dull play. REUTERS/Michael Kooren

Ryan Babel of the Netherlands runs towards the ball during a friendly match against Ghana ahead of World Cup 2010, in Rotterdam June 1, 2010. Netherlands should finally be able to show off their true style when they face Brazil in the quarter-finals, winger Babel said on Tuesday after growing criticism back home of dull play.

Credit: Reuters/Michael Kooren

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Netherlands should finally be able to show off their true style when they face top ranked Brazil in the World Cup quarter-finals, winger Ryan Babel said on Tuesday after growing criticism back home of dull play.

The Dutch, despite winning all four games they have played in the tournament, have been criticised by fans and media for not showing their usual attacking flair.

Babel said the main focus was winning and the team's lack of flair was more about their opponents than them. This should change in Friday's game against free-scoring Brazil at the Soccer City Stadium in Johannesburg.

"I think it is always difficult to play against teams that don't want to play football, who are waiting for you," Babel said a day after Netherlands beat Slovakia 2-1 in the last 16.

"We play our better games against teams that want to play football as well and, on Friday, Brazil is not going to wait so maybe we can play better than yesterday."

An early strike by winger Arjen Robben, in his first start after injury, set Netherlands on their way and Wesley Sneijder slotted a second before a late consolation goal for Slovakia.

Netherlands topped Group E after wins against Denmark, Japan and Cameroon.

Babel said the team was not paying attention to critics.

"We don't really take any interest in that kind of criticism. At the end when we win the tournament, nobody will talk about the style of football that we have been using."

Coach Bert van Marwijk said five-time champions Brazil would be quick to punish any mistakes "so it's really important to not lose the ball, let's say, in the axis of the field."

Brazil are also unbeaten so far in South Africa, crushing their first knockout round opponent Chile 3-0 on Monday.

(Reporting by Gordon Bell, Editing by Nigel Hunt)

Reuters Showcase

Indian Healthcare

Indian Healthcare

Exclusive - Payment delays dent India's flagship health, AIDS programmes  Full Article 

India-Pakistan Ties

India-Pakistan Ties

Indian, Pakistani foreign secretaries to meet in Islamabad.  Full Article 

Food Security

Food Security

India will not cut multi-billion dollar food handout programme - PM   Full Article 

Jaitley Speaks

Jaitley Speaks

India needs sustained GDP growth of 9-10 percent - Jaitley.  Full Article 

Obama Interview

Obama Interview

Exclusive - Nemtsov killing sign of worsening climate in Russia: Obama.  Full Article 

Environment Concerns

Environment Concerns

Deforestation could shift monsoons, leaving India high and dry.  Full Article 

Forbes Rich List

Forbes Rich List

Bill Gates tops Forbes rich list, Michael Jordan joins.  Full Article 

New Tour

New Tour

Pop icon Madonna announces dates for 'Rebel Heart' tour.  Full Article 

Lathmar Holi

In Pics: Lathmar Holi

Images of "Lathmar Holi" at Nandgaon in Uttar Pradesh.  Full Coverage 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage