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Julio Ribas’ Gibraltar side defended like Warriors last night despite falling 6-0 at the De Kuip to a Netherlands outfit that were unrelenting in attack.

Despite missing key players such as Dayle Coleing, Tjay De Barr, Jack Sergeant, Erin Barnett, Ethan Jolley and Kyle Goldwin, Gibraltar put on a gritty defensive performance against Louis Van Gaal’s men.

With both Coleing and Goldwin out, through injury and suspension respectively, Ribas found himself in need of a goalkeeper, a position which was filled by debutant Bradley Banda.

The Europa FC goalkeeper was one of Gibraltar’s brightest sparks of the evening as he put in a solid and commanding performance which even included a penalty save from FC Barcelona striker Memphis Depay.

Before his penalty save however, Banda found himself picking the ball out from the back of the net in the 8thminute as Virgil Van Dijk escaped his marker to power home the opening goal of the game.

The Dutch had the ball in the back of the net yet again minutes later however, a VAR check ruled out the goal for offside.

Unfortunately for Gibraltar, although the goal was disallowed, the VAR check resulted in a penalty being given for a handball and up stepped Depay.

With his trademark stuttering run up, the Barca frontman looked certain to double Netherlands’ lead, however, a big hand from Banda who quickly sprung to his right saw the effort saved.

Despite the miss, Depay was determined to get on the scoresheet and a couple minutes later he was as he linked up with Davy Klaassen inside the box to tap the ball into the net to make it 2-0 after 20 minutes.

Encouraged by the home support, the Dutch side were unrelenting in their attacks, however, Gibraltar, full of both experience and youth, were equally as relentless in defence and were thus proving tough to breakdown.

Gibraltar would call upon Banda yet again throughout the half, as he denied both Gini Wijnaldum in a 1-on-1 and Stefan De Vrij from a corner, as well as captain Roy Chipolina who produced a massive block on the aforementioned Wijnaldum from point blank range.

Unfortunately for Gibraltar, Netherlands would go on to score one more goal in the half after yet another penalty was given following a rather harsh VAR handball decision during injury time.

Again, up stepped Depay who this time buried his penalty, opting to change direction as he rocketed his shot into the top right corner of the net to make it 3-0.

The second half saw a couple of change for Gibraltar as young stars Ethan Britto and Kian Ronan were brought on to provide more of an attacking presence for Gibraltar, and do so they did throughout the half.

With this being said, Netherlands had their fourth goal of the game almost immediately after the restart as Denzel Dumfries got himself on the end of a Noah Lang back post cross to nod the ball home.

The quick start for the home side did not faze Julio’s men whose organised and last-ditch defending continued to frustrate a Dutch side who were clearly out to score goals.

Banda again played his part in keeping out the Dutch attacks, this time producing a fine low save down to his right to deny Ajax winger Steven Berghuis from grabbing the 5th of the game in the 50th minute.

Gibraltar continued to defend as a unit, with Julian Valarino, who had started the match on the left wing, deputising brilliantly at right back, while both Louie Annesley and Graeme Torrilla put in tireless performances in the midfield.

Eventually however, the endless waves of attacks eventually broke through Gibraltar’s rear guard as Villareal’s Arnaut Danjuma got himself on the scoresheet after linking up well with fellow substitute Wout Weghorst before slotting the ball into the bottom corner.

Netherlands would eventually go onto make it 6-0 in the 85th minute, but not before Chipolina would himself deny Weghorst the chance to be on the scoresheet as the veteran captain produced a last-ditch goal-line clearance much at the dismay of the Wolfsburg man.

With this being said, Weghorst would have a hand in Netherlands’ sixth goal as he combined well with Depay within the Gibraltar penalty area before the ball found its way to Borussia Dortmund’s newest signing Donyell Malen who powered home the final goal of the night.

Despite the score, the Gibraltar players can be very proud of the performance they put in on the night as they left their all on the De Kuip pitch and successfully frustrated Van Gaal’s star-filled side for much of the 90.

Next up for Gibraltar is November’s FIFA World Cup Qualifiers away at Turkey and at home to Latvia.