Are you watching, Ole? Donny van de Beek sends strong message to Man United boss Solskjaer as midfielder plays starring role in Amsterdam to cancel out Sergio Canales’ opener
- Donny van de Beek struck for successive Holland games as they drew with Spain
- The Dutchman will hope his boss at Manchester United was following the game
- Van de Beek has found opportunities limited since his Premier League move
- His goal, early in the second half, cancelled out a fine opener by Sergio Canales
Donny van de Beek will not know for sure but after scoring a crucial equaliser in Amsterdam against Spain on Wednesday, he will hope a watching Ole Gunnar Solskjaer had some food for thought.
Van de Beek struck minutes into the second half to cancel out Sergio Caneles’ fizzing strike in what was a pulsating friendly.
United parted with £40million this summer to land Van de Beek from Ajax and yet opportunities have been fleeting, many have had to come from the bench. But here he was to play a leading role, his strike a firm effort on the half-volley having escaped clear of his marker at the back post.
Donny van de Beek (right) put in an impressive display as his goal proved vital against Spain
Minutes into the second half the Manchester United midfielder fired home on the half-volley
Sergio Canales had earlier given Spain a deserved lead with a low finish into the bottom corner
Spain were good value for Canales’ strike but a resilient Holland fought back in Amsterdam
While Van de Beek was the positive to emerge from the evening, there will be concern for United’s rivals Manchester City after defender Nathan Ake hobbled off clutching his hamstring inside six minutes.
The 25-year-old collapsed to the turf before clutching the back of his right leg and it arrives as the latest injury setback for City boss Pep Guardiola.
City have already seen fellow defenders Aymeric Laporte and Benjamin Mendy suffered injury problems this term.
Spain’s goal was welcome relief but they struggled to create meaningful chances thereafter
An injury concern for Holland and Manchester City saw Nathan Ake (middle) hobble off
Holland: Bizot, Hateboer (Dumfries 46), Veltman, Ake (Blind 6), Wijndal, Wijnaldum (Klaassen 46), Van de Beek, Frenkie de Jong (De Vrij 46), Berghuis (Stengs 46), Luuk de Jong, Depay (Babel 79).
Subs not used: Krul, Van Aanholt, Promes, Koopmeiners, Malen, Drommel.
Goals: Van de Beek (47)
Booked: Van de Beek
Spain: Simon, Bellerin, Garcia, Martinez (Ramos 85), Gaya (Reguilon 29), Asensio (Traore 62), Rodri, Koke, Canales (Llorente 72), Morata (Olmo 62), Gerard (Ferran Torres 61).
Subs not used: De Gea, Pau Torres, Busquets, Fabian, Sergi Roberto, Arrizabalaga.
Goals: Canales (18)
Booked: Reguilon, Olmo
Referee: Davide Massa (Italy)
Things started much brighter for Spain.
Real Betis’ Canales scored his first international goal after 18 minutes when Juventus striker Alvaro Morata slipped him in and he found the bottom corner from 16 yards.
Morata has looked revived since moving back to Juventus and he once again impressed in this affair.
Van de Beek levelled immediately after the break when Owen Wijndal’s cross went across the area and he drilled low past Unai Simon.
Sergio Ramos came on in the second half for Spain for his 176th international appearance, which made him the joint most capped European man with Gianluigi Buffon.
When quizzed at the end on his side’s lack of potency in attack, Spain boss Luis Enrique said he is ‘not concerned’.
‘We had imbalances in the second half,’ he said. ‘They have caused us problems.’
Jose Luis Gaya was an injury scare for Spain as he required stitches after a deep cut on his head.
‘We will talk to the doctors,’ Enrique added.
‘A blow to the head always worries us.’
Gaya went off and Enrique refused to quash the possibility of making a replacement call-up for forthcoming games.
‘We do not rule out calling another player, who has to have the PCR updated, or calling a player from the U-21.’
It represents the latest injury blow to City boss Pep Guardiola as Ake clutched his hamstring
Sergio Ramos came on in the second half to become the joint most capped European man
Frenkie de Jong had a difficult evening but Holland will be encouraged by their efforts overall