DOHA, Qatar (AP) — The Netherlands is on the verge of reaching the knockout stage at the World Cup and an overwhelming favorite in its final Group A match on Tuesday against host nation Qatar.
If the Dutch advance it will put more focus on 71-year-old coach Louis van Gaal, who stepped out of retirement just over a year ago to take over the national team while being treated for aggressive prostate cancer.
Host nation Qatar has lost its first two matches and already missed its chance to move on from the group stage. But coach Felix Sanchez says his team will be prepared to face one of soccer’s traditional powers.
“When you play against a team such as the Netherlands, you don’t need any motivation,” Sanchez said. “It’s a challenge for our players to face such a team.”
“This was a very demanding group for us,” Sanchez added. “We’ve …