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Saturday, March 28, 2009

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"I don't believe it had anything to do with that," Van Basten, who has long said he would resign after the tournament to take over as Ajax coach, said.

"It was a logical choice in a tough tournament that demands a lot of players.

"Besides that, it was an opportunity for the rest to show their qualities and that might have had a positive influence for the squad."

The Dutch did not start the tournament as favourites but after beating 2006 World Cup winners Italy and France in their first two matches they emerged as leading candidates after reaching the last eight.

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