04.07.2024 22:00 h

Blind warns Netherlands over Turkey 'away' quarters clash

Netherlands defender Daley Blind warned his team-mates they must be on guard against a Turkey side with huge support in the Euro 2024 quarter-finals on Saturday.

An estimated three million Turkish people live in Germany and their fans have flocked to their matches so far this summer, creating fierce and raucous atmospheres.

One-time winners in 1988, Netherlands face Turkey in Berlin aiming for a spot in the semi-finals against England or Switzerland.

"It will be an away match I think, the Turks will be there en masse," Girona centre-back Blind told reporters on Thursday.

"They are passionate, it will be an emotional match. We have to be on guard, we will have to be well prepared."

Turkey fans have celebrated long into the night after their victories over Georgia, the Czech Republic and most recently Austria in the last 16 on Tuesday.

"They will probably make a lot of noise -- we should not be surprised by that," continued Blind, 34.

"The trick is to put the right emotion and passion into it on the pitch, but also choose to use good positional play at times to silence them."

Blind said the Dutch had been fortunate with the draw which pitted them against Romania in the last 16 and now against Turkey, compared to some other countries.

"We have been pretty lucky after the group stage, there's no need to deny that," the former Manchester United and Ajax defender added.

"Look at the opponents of other countries... but on the other hand, smaller countries make it hard for the bigger ones."

Blind did not appear in the group phase for the Netherlands and made a brief substitute appearance for his 108th cap as they beat Romania 3-0 to reach the quarter-finals.

"My reserve role is taking some getting used to," said Blind, who has played the fifth most matches for his country of all time.

"It's also a challenge again, now I have to keep my teammates on their toes.

"As a player you want to play every game, but it's the coach's choice... I still find it a great honour to play for the Dutch national team."