Memphis Depay put up a hallmark performance for the Netherlands in a 2-0 victory over Austria at the European Championship, with Barcelona coach Ronald Koeman watching from the stands.
The striker, who has a month left on his Lyon contract and is widely anticipated to join Barcelona, scored a penalty and assisted on the Netherlands’ second goal. He also squandered a fantastic opportunity while seeking to beat opponents, causing problems for his own team.
Memphis freely admits that his style of play is high-risk and that some of his flashy dribbles, back heels, and daring passes aren’t always successful. Coaches and teammates in the Netherlands, on the other hand, are content to take the good with the bad, knowing that he can flip a match in an instance of unorthodox ingenuity.
Depay hasn’t been at his best in the Netherlands’ two Group C victories, a 3-2 win over Ukraine and a 1-0 win over Austria on Thursday, according to coach Frank de Boer.
Depay was a promising 20-year-old youngster waiting in the wings behind established forwards Robin van Persie and Arjen Robben the last time Netherlands competed in a major soccer tournament, at the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.
Despite this, he scored two goals in Brazil before joining Manchester United from PSV Eindhoven a year later. However, he was unable to make an impression at Old Trafford and moved to Lyon in 2017.
He grew into a leader in France, away from the pressures of the Premier League, and has recently had his highest-scoring season with 20 goals. He has also developed into an undisputed leader for the Dutch national team, seizing the ball whenever a free-kick is within striking distance.
His penalty against Austria was his 27th international goal in 66 games. His six goals so far this season have already surpassed his most productive year in the Netherlands’ orange shirt.
Even though Depay is yet to live up to expectations at the European Championship, Dumfries is confident that his moment will come.