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Netherlands Ties England, 2-2 : Soccer: Neither team succeeds in gaining upper hand in race to qualify for the 1994 World Cup.

April 29, 1993|From Staff and Wire Reports

WEMBLEY, England — Peter van Vossen scored on a penalty kick with six minutes to play Wednesday night, giving the Netherlands a 2-2 tie with England in a key World Cup qualifying match.

England (3-0-2) outplayed the Dutch for most of the game, taking a 2-0 lead on John Barnes' goal 65 seconds into the match and David Platt's goal in the 23rd minute, his 18th goal for England.

But Dennis Bergkamp scored in the 34th minute off a pass from Jan Wouters, and the Netherlands (3-1-2) got the tie after Des Walker pulled down Bergkamp by the shirt in the penalty area.

Because of the reputation of the English and Dutch fans, organizers of the 1994 World Cup, to be held in the United States, sent a team of security experts to observe the precautions taken by the English authorities. Ed Best, head of security for the 1994 World Cup in the United States, attended, as did World Cup '94 Chairman, Alan Rothenberg.

Rothenberg had said that because of the potential for violence and hooliganism at the match, it would serve as a learning experience. Both England and the Netherlands have a chance to qualify for the World Cup.

Despite concerns, the near-capacity crowd of 73,000 in Wembley Stadium was boisterous but generally well-behaved. About 8,000 Dutch fans attended.

Because the teams played to a draw, the match served only to further cloud the qualifying process. Norway (4-0-1), which beat Turkey, 3-1, Wednesday, leads Europe Group Two with nine points, followed by England and the Netherlands with eight each.

The top two teams qualify for the 1994 World Cup finals.

The Netherlands missed forward Marco Van Basten of AC Milan, who on Sunday played his first game since ankle surgery in December; and sweeper Ronald Koeman of Barcelona, who is injured.

Barnes, a star for Liverpool but relatively unsuccessful with the national team, scored his first goal for England in three years.

After Rob Witschge fouled Paul Ince just outside the penalty area, Barnes curled a left-footed shot around the defensive wall and past goalkeeper Ed de Goey.

England's second goal came after Paul Gascoigne beat two defenders and sent a pass to Les Ferdinand, whose shot hit the post. The rebound went to Platt who, while falling, put the ball into an empty net.

With 20 minutes to play, the Dutch replaced a tired Gullit with Van Vossen.

In other World Cup qualifying games in Europe, Portugal routed Scotland, 5-0, in Group One; Poland beat San Marino, 1-0, in Group Two; Ireland tied Denmark, 1-1, and Spain beat Northern Ireland, 3-1, in Group Three; Czechoslovakia tied Wales, 1-1, in Group Four; Russia beat Hungary, 3-0, in Group Five; and France beat Sweden, 2-1, and Bulgaria beat Finland, 2-0, in Group Six.

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