De Boer, who was appointed national team manager in September last year, has tried to perfect the 5-3-2 formation in recent weeks ahead of this summer's European Championship, with mixed results.
And those mixed results forced a fan to express his opinion on the controversial tactic during a training session ahead of Sunday's game against Ukraine at the Johan Cruijff ArenA.
Can't believe this is actually real, probably only happens in The Netherlands :joy::sob: pic.twitter.com/pNsZXwmgth
- :gem: (@TheEuropeanLad) June 12, 2021
The former Crystal Palace and Inter Milan manager opted for the formation in a friendly clash against Scotland last week - and was widely criticised following a below-par performance during the 2-2 draw.
HT: Scotland 1-1 The Netherlands.
Poor first half. Felt more annoyed than entertained by these 45 minutes. So much to work on with this formation. pic.twitter.com/QAwx3SfsL4
- :gem: (@TheEuropeanLad) June 2, 2021
That being said, De Boer is keen to persist with the 5-3-2 formation. In fact, he suggested that there is a "good chance" the Netherlands will use that system against Ukraine in their opening Group C fixture.
"I want to stick to 5-3-2. I am convinced that we need that," said De Boer ahead of their 3-0 win against Georgia last weekend.
"Whether that is also the formation against Ukraine? There is a good chance, although nothing is final,"
"The past few days have been fruitful. We have analyzed a lot, talked and trained well. I have talked to players because I want to know how they feel about the game and how they saw it."
De Boer has also claimed the players are fully behind the tactical decision.
"It's a learning process," he added. "It's not called a practice match for nothing. You have to learn from that. It's about June 13th. The selection agrees with this choice."
It must be noted that the 51-year-old manager, who enjoyed a playing career at Ajax, Barcelona and Rangers, is also flexible when it comes to adapting the much-loved 4-3-3 formation.
"If I think it's necessary, we'll do it," he said when asked about the tactic. "We also have the players for 4-3-3. Steven Berghuis can do well there, but also Donyell Malen, Quincy Promes and Cody Gakpo."
5-3-2 is not the formation I would go for against "weaker" countries. But since this is the formation De Boer will use, this would be my line-up vs Georgia/Ukraine/Austria & North Macedonia.
Against much stronger sides I would switch a few players. pic.twitter.com/CjLGwZeGJp
- :gem: (@TheEuropeanLad) June 5, 2021
Do you think the Netherlands can progress to the latter stages of this summer's tournament?
Let us know in the comments.
Featured Image Credit: PA/@TheEuropeanLad - Twitter
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