After missing out on the 24 team European Championships in France the Dutch thought that their national team couldn’t get much worse- it did on Saturday when they lost to Alexsandar Tonev’s Bulgaria.
A 2-0 defeat in Sofia cost Danny Blind his job with Holland sitting in fourth place in Group A, a distant six points behind leaders France and three short of second placed Sweden.
Bulgaria’s win wasn’t really too much of a shock, they started the match a point behind Holland whose two wins had come against Luxembourg and Belarus.
The re-emergence of Tonev as an internationalist is certainly a shock, it never worked for him at Aston Villa, his Celtic loan was short and not so sweet with a lengthy SFA ban to contend with before returning to the midlands.
Relegation last season from Serie A with Frosinone wasn’t much of a shock with Tonev moving on to Crotone in the close season, 14 points from 29 matches suggest that the 27-year-old Bulgarian is on his way to back-to-back relegations.
Despite his problems at club level with just seven starts in Serie A the former Celt is back in fashion for Bulgaria.
Playing in four of the five World Cup qualifiers this season he was impressive against Holland and scored in the opening qualifier against Luxembourg.
Next up for Tonev is a trip to Belarus on June 9 where a win will ensure that Bulgaria start next season still in contention for a play off spot with France looking likely group winners.