It’s possible Netherlands may have been underestimated.
Most knowledgeable observers predicted they would progress to the knockout stages of Euro 2020 but there were questions over how comfortable their group fixtures would be after Virgil van Dijk stated he would have to miss the tournament.
Frank de Boer’s tactics have also attracted considerable criticism but the Oranje’s fans have every reason to feel confident after three wins from three in Group C.
Not only that, Netherlands are likely to finish the group stages as the highest scoring team in the competition having netted eight goals so far.
And it’s the free-scoring nature of the Dutch that has resulted in three of their representatives featuring in the top seven overall Dream Team Euros players at the time of writing.
Gini Wijnaldum (£3.5m) is mixing it with Romelu Lukaku and Cristiano Ronaldo in the leading pack hunting the Golden Boot having scored three goals in the group stages.
In several of our pre-tournament tips articles, we referenced the 30-year-old’s vastly superior scoring record for his country. Wijnaldum has scored 25 goals in 78 international caps – compare that to 22 goals in 237 games for Liverpool.
PSG’s new signing plays as Netherlands’ most-attacking midfielder, often finding himself in tap-in territory as he did against North Macedonia.
At the time of writing, only Kevin De Bruyne has scored more than Wijnaldum’s 21 points among all Dream Team Euros midfielders.
Memphis Depay (£4.5m) has gone from strength to strength with each passing game at Euro 2020.
The tattooed forward started with three points against Ukraine then bagged eight points versus Austria before taking North Macedonia for 15 points – that’s 26 overall.
Depay starred for Lyon in 2020/21 as both a goalscorer and a creator, finishing the Ligue 1 campaign with 20 goals and 12 assists.
He’s transferred the same dual purpose to Euro 2020 so far, with two goals and an assist in 238 minutes.
Denzel Dumfries (£3.0m) is the third Netherlands player hanging around the top of the rankings in Dream Team Euros.
In fact, only Ronaldo (33) has more points to his name than the PSV right-back (27).
Arguably the breakout player of the tournament so far, Dumfries has benefited from clean sheets plus two thoroughly deserved goals – Patrik Schick (£2.5m) is the only player to have registered more shots on target from inside box at Euro 2020.
Defenders with attacking merits are precious gems to Dream Team Euros bosses and that’s why Dumfries’ ownership has reached risen to 10%.
It’s clear that those who went big on the Dutch from the get-go have been handsomely rewarded but the relevant question now must be: will Depay and co continue to produce the goods?
Netherlands will play their round of 16 fixture on Sunday against one of the best third-placed teams.
The format of the tournament means they could be up against a team of Slovakia or Scotland’s standing. Equally, they might find themselves matched up with Portugal or Spain.
If they end up with a favourable fixture, then backing Depay, Dumfires and Wijnaldum for another week could be very profitable.