Spain may be the favourites, but the Dutch should not be underestimated in the World Cup final, says Victoria University Professor of Sport Business and Dutchman by birth, Hans Westerbeek.
With the Dutch undefeated at all stages throughout the tournament on the one hand but criticised for taking dives and staging for penalties on the other, Professor Westerbeek said the final will be closely watched by football aficionados and officials.
Professor Westerbeek, who has a framed signed team jersey of Dutch team Ajax hanging on his office wall, is a big football fan and an expert on The Netherlands team.
His academic expertise focuses on the marketing and social/cultural issues of major sporting events.
"Everything orange is moving off the shelves at lightning speed in The Netherlands right now," he said.
"Being in the World Cup final is a dream come true for the game and for commercial activity whichever the country. This is especially true in Holland, because the team is the underdog and has never previously won a World Cup, despite twice being finalists in the 1970s."
Professor Westerbeek is an experienced media commentator on television, radio and in print.
In addition to his chair in sport business at Victoria University he is the director of VU's Institute of Sport, Exercise and Active Living (ISEAL).
Dutch supporters in Melbourne will gather for the 4.30am final on Monday at the Portland Hotel/James Squire Brewhouse, corner Russell and Little Collins streets, Melbourne.
Hans Westerbeek contact details: 0408 133 756; [email protected]
Media inquiries: Jim Buckell, A/Senior Media Officer
Marketing and Communications Department, Victoria University
Ph: (03) 9919 4243; mobile: 0400 465 459; email: [email protected]