The Newcastle goalkeeper has had an amazing season (you don’t need me to tell you that) what with amazing penalty saves, fantastic shot stopping and decisive goalkeeping in general. He certainly caught the eye of many a club and earned him a rightful call-up to the Holland squad for Euro 2012.
Yet, Stekelenburg once again gets the call in goal for the Dutch, which I find rather puzzling when you have the quality of goalkeeper on the bench the Dutch have, especially seen as Stekelenburg hasn’t caught the eye quite as much.
Doing the homework on his history, he was one of the star keepers in the Dutch league winning the Eredivisie before his recent switch to Roma, where this year they finished seventh in the league, narrowly missing out on a place in the europa league next season.
Yet judging from his performances so far in the Euros as part of the Dutch faltering defence, if I were Bert van Marwijk I would definitely have a shakeup in defence, mainly by starting Krul in goal.
There is no question in my mind that Krul should be the Dutch first choice keeper, at times this season he has single-handedly won us points and game and has certainly been one of the main reasons we have finished in 5th place.
Prime examples of this were the 1-0 home win against Wigan, where without him it would of certainly been at least a draw in my eyes, also another good example of how key he is was the Blackburn away game, which we won 2-0 after getting a hammering all over the pitch in the first half, which even included a penalty save, despite it being a poor kick. Even looking at him against England in the friendly match earlier this year he played well despite conceding two goals at the death.
What for me sets Krul and Stekelenburg apart is from what I have seen from Stekelenburg playing at the Euros, is that Krul seems to come off better in one on one saves, obviously I cannot judge Krul on the same stage as Stekelenburg as he has not currently played on it yet, but is it not worth a go?
Stekelenburg started against Germany yesterday evening and perhaps showed why this question is beginning to come to the forefront of Bert van Marwijk’s mind. He made several mistakes, fumbling the ball twice and nearly costing his nation two more goals to add further embarrassment to a crushing loss. Gomez’s second goal was another example of where he falls short of Krul’s safe hands. He fell to the ground too early and, as a result, allowed the German striker to nestle the ball in the top corner.
Also, on a more comical note Stekelenburg, while on a victory lap with Ajax after winning the league, dropped the trophy from the bus, so one can hardly say he has “safe hands”.