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Virgil van Dijk claims ref's actions at final whistle vs England said it all about penalty

England were awarded a controversial penalty as they beat the Netherlands 2-1 to reach the final of Euro 2024 and Dutch captain Virgil van Dijk has had his say on the incident

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Netherlands captain Virgil van Dijk has claimed the actions of referee Felix Zwayer at the final whistle "says it all" about the controversial penalty he awarded England.

England beat the Dutch 2-1 in Dortmund to book their place in the final of Euro 2024 where they will take on Spain. Ollie Watkins scored a dramatic last-gasp winner for the Three Lions, but the Netherlands were not happy with Harry Kane's equaliser from the penalty spot.

Shortly after Xavi Simons gave Ronald Koeman's side the lead with a brilliant strike, England were awarded a penalty after clash between Kane and Denzel Dumfries. Kane was caught by Dumfries while taking a shot and Zwayer did not initially award a penalty.

However, he was asked to check for a foul by VAR and ended up reversing his decision, with Kane promptly converting from the spot. And when asked about the incident after the match, Van Dijk seemed to suggest the fact Zwayer "went in quite quickly after the game" meant he knew he had made the wrong decision.

"I don't know what to say," Van Dijk told beIN SPORTS. "I don't know if I should say something about this, but I said it outside to our Dutch media. I think it says it all that the referee went in quite quickly after the game.

"We had no time to shake his hand, but it is what it is. The game is done, we lost and it's very tough to take. Certain moments obviously should have gone our way and it didn't, but whatever. It's difficult to accept this.

"I'm emotional, it's been a very long and tough year and we had a big dream that we felt like we could have achieved here as a team. They keep changing certain things, making small changes that could have big impacts.

England were awarded a controversial penalty

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Image:

PA)

"But maybe it would be a good thing that they could be held accountable, let them come here and speak to you guys and explain themselves like we have to explain ourselves when we do something wrong."

Dutch boss Koeman, though, refused to take aim at Zwayer when quizzed on the penalty, stating: "Let me not say anything about the referee." He continued: "My feeling was in the last 20/25 minutes, maybe our team is a little bit more fresh than England.

"But they scored a late goal in the last minute and that's football. Sometimes I don't say it's unlucky because it's a great goal. Maybe we deserved extra time, but it's like that. We can be proud about our team, our players because we had a great tournament and unlucky that it stops tonight."

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