The Dutch, known for sometimes being blunt and direct, did not mince their words in criticising their team's defeat by Spain in the World Cup final.
Netherlands have never won the trophy in the tournament's 80-year history but hopes were high that their third appearance in the final would finally see them cast off the unwanted label of being "the best team never to have won the World Cup."
"In 1974 we were the best. In 1978 we were better. In 2010 we were just not good enough," said Monday's Daily Telegraaf, the nation's highest-circulation newspaper. The 1-0 extra-time loss came after uncharacteristically rough play by the Dutch in an apparent attempt to disrupt Spain's rhythm, dashing hopes of a classic match between two teams that had never won soccer's biggest prize. "We deserved to lose," was a common phrase heard in offices and posted on social networking websites on Monday.
Defeated Dutch reach home
Amsterdam: The Dutch football team returned home, their plane escorted by two F-16 fighter jets. The team landed at 5.20 pm (8.30 pm IST) at Amsterdam's Schiphol airport, where they were kept away from the public.
The players were then led to an orange-carpeted podium for an audience with about 100 journalists and photographers in a section of the airport closed off to the public.
After the press conference, the team were flown by military helicopter to a hotel where they will be reunited with their loved ones, airport spokeswoman Kathelijn Vermeulen told reporters.