Dutch coach Danny Blind has officially tendered his resignation to the KNVB following the Oranjeâ€™s latest defeat away to Bulgaria which has left the three-time World Cup runners-up in fourth place in Group A in the European Zone World Cup qualifiers and in the precarious position of realistically missing out on a place at Footballâ€™s greatest spectacle for the first time since the ill-fated Korea/Japan 2002 campaign.
Speaking at a press conference in Amsterdam this evening after the team arrived from Sofia where two early goals from Bulgarian Striker Spas Delev further dented Dutch hopes of a revival to their stuttering World Cup campaign, Mr. Blind had this to say:
â€śNever in my wildest dreams would I have thought that I would have been at the helm of a Dutch team which would be struggling like this. We had a great opportunity to at least go second in the group and gain a potential play-off spot. But with this latest defeat and with only five more matches to play, there is now no more room for error. It is on this note that I wish my successor, whoever he is, good luck in guiding the Oranje to Russia because as of this hour I am no longer in charge.â€ť
As shocked reporters and players looked on, Mr. Blind pulled out a note from his left shirt pocket and handed it to a stunned KNVB President Michael van Praag.
Mr. Blind continued:
â€śThis should come as no surprise to anyone. This is a team that has numerous problems. The younger players are not stepping up and there is always this tendency to rely too much on Robben. Why should this be? I sincerely hope that my replacement can surely work a miracle with this current team and that they will be able to do in this World Cup campaign what they have never done before - win five consecutive games.â€ť