The Netherlands goalkeeper expressed his frustration after it was deemed he was at fault for his side’s loss to Portugal on Sunday
Jasper Cillessen has hit back at the criticism which he has been subjected to following the Netherlands’ defeat to Portugal in the Nations League final.
The Barcelona goalkeeper was questioned about his role in Sunday’s loss in Porto as Goncalo Guedes scored the only goal in a 1-0 victory for the hosts.
Cillessen did get a hand to the shot but was unable to keep it out, though he insists he was unsighted.
“I saw the ball very late, because Denzel Dumfries and Daley Blind were standing there. And Guedes’ shot was pretty hard,” Cillessen told FOX Sports.
That victory handed the inaugural Nations League title to Portugal but the Dutch will feel disappointed that they did not put up a better fight.
A large part of the blame for the defeat has been put at the door of Cillessen, who believes that he has become a scapegoat for his national team.
“In the Netherlands, we go very easy on that. I already received some messages: the Dutch media write a lot about it and I’m a little tired of that.
“I saw the ball late and he hit it pretty hard. That’s the only thing I’ve seen right now. Anyway, we always criticise someone very easily in the Netherlands.”
It was not only in the final that Cillessen attracted bad press. In the semi-final against England he received negative reviews for his failure to stop Marcus Rashford’s penalty.
Many Dutch fans took to social media to lament Cillessen’s penalty saving record, saying that the goalkeeper dived too early for the Englishman’s spot kick.
“I will be careful what I say: I’m a little tired of that as well. It’s too easy to say that, especially if you check out Rashford’s last few penalties.
“It’s too easy what everyone has said about it. I really don’t like it.”
Serving as the second choice goalkeeper at Barcelona has also led to questions around his future at club level, too.
Numerous goalkeepers around Europe have been linked with the Spanish champions, who are rumoured to be in the market for a new shot-stopper, but Cillessen will not be rushed into any decision.
According to Marca , the Netherlands international is happy to bide his time and wait until returning from his holiday to make any decision on his future.
“I still have not considered anything,” said Cillessen.
“I want to go on holiday, then I’ll meet with my agent and we’ll talk.”
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