Difficult night for City keeper as Holland suffer shock defeat to Turkey
- Credit: Paul Chesterton/Focus Images Ltd
It proved a rather forgettable night for Norwich City goalkeeper Tim Krul as Holland started World Cup qualification with a shock 4-2 defeat in Turkey.
Krul was initially named as a substitute with Jasper Cillessen reclaiming the gloves after returning from a long-term injury for Valencia in recent weeks, but an injury forced a late change and Krul was given his 12th cap.
Holland dominated possession but allowed veteran Lille striker Burak Yilmaz to shoot from the edge of the box in the 15th minute and the effort took a big deflection to wrong-foot Krul as it spun inside his right-hand post, shifting his weight but not being able to keep the ball out.
It was 2-0 in the 34th minute as a Dutch defender conceded a penalty. The City number one tried his usual lively antics to try and disrupt the taker, bouncing on his line, but initially moving to dive to his left as Yilmaz blasted the spot-kick to his right.
A shock was on the cards at the Ataturk Olympic Stadium in Istanbul, with Holland 14th in the Fifa rankings and the hosts 18 places lower as qualification for the 2022 World Cup in Qatar begins.
The Turks put the game to bed in the first minute of the second half, with AC Milan midfielder Hakan Calhanoglu given the freedom to shoot from 25 yards, to the left of the D.
The ball curled away from Krul and bounced just in front of him, leaving him unable to prevent the ball ending up in the bottom-left corner of his net.
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Two goals in two minutes threatened a Dutch comeback but Yilmaz ensured that didn't happen with a sensational free-kick in the 81st minute, driving a superb strike into the top-right corner as Krul stretched in vain to try and keep it out.
The visitors wasted an opportunity to pull back another goal in the fourth minute of added time, as Memphis Depay's penalty was saved.
Attention will now turn to Cillessen's fitness, who had missed much of Valencia's season through injury, ahead of further qualifiers at home to Latvia on Saturday and in Gibraltar on Tuesday.
The other keeper in the squad is 38-year-old former Everton, Southampton and Fulham keeper Maarten Stekelenburg, who has 58 caps and has returned to the international squad after reclaiming the starting role at Ajax in recent months following the start of a 12-month doping ban for Cameroon keeper Andre Onana.
However, Krul has started the last three games for Frank de Boer's team, having played in a 3-1 home win over Bosnia & Herzegovina and a 2-1 win in Poland in the Nations League in November.
The 32-year-old former Newcastle number one has only conceded 15 goals in 29 games for Norwich this season, keeping 16 Championship clean sheets.
Elsewhere, City forward Danel Sinani was in action for Luxembourg, playing the opening hour of a 1-0 friendly defeat to World Cup hosts Qatar in Hungary.
The 23-year-old has scored twice in 16 games for Waasland-Beveren so far this season but has been on the fringes of their team recently, with his loan club bottom of the Belgian top flight.
In the 7.45pm kick-offs, Canaries striker Teemu Pukki starts as expected as Finland host Bosnia & Herzegovina at the start of their World Cup qualification campaign.
City keeper Orjan Nyland isn't one of the two keepers on the bench for Norway in Gibraltar though, after four were called up ahead of their three qualifiers.
- Click here for the full schedule of City players potentially in international action