The Orange madness has erupted in the Ahornstraat in Breda and the Merwedestraat in Eindhoven. Both streets are traditionally covered with banners and miles of flags. With five days left until the start of the World Cup, the Orange fever is increasing every day. “This is not all. It gets even crazier”, says Mink Pronk (60) from Breda.

    Six hundred to eight hundred euros: this is how much the Ahornstraat spent on flags, lions and other decorations this year alone. During previous tournaments, the residents of the working-class neighborhood of Tuinzigt also built up a full barn of decoration material.

    “We have bought everything. There is little left to get in Brabant,” jokes Nel Holzken. “This brings us a lot of pleasure. We will continue to decorate, of course! Soon we will take a look with the whole street. Then everyone will be outside,” she says proudly.

    Next time it will be even bigger. We keep growing.

    “This is an old working-class neighbourhood. Everyone is one here. We are all gabbers together, so we help each other,” continues Mink Pronk, right in front of his orange-colored front door. “Next time it will be even bigger. We will continue to grow.”

    The Ahornstraat is richly decorated (photo: Omroep Brabant).
    The Ahornstraat is richly decorated (photo: Omroep Brabant).

    The Ahornstraat has been decorated for decades, but last year it was just as difficult. Thousands of euros worth of decorations were stored with someone, but they had thrown everything away. Therefore, the street had to start again in 2021. After literally going around with the cap several times, the Oranjekas is well stocked again.

    The Merwedestraat in Eindhoven has also turned out great. Even the street lamps and trees are decorated. “The neighbor has been working on this for forty hours. I am very proud, the whole street is participating,” laughs 39-year-old Robert Geerings. Will they buy out the entire pick-up shop next tournament? “Not quite, but a lot,” laughs 72-year-old local resident Tinus Renders.

    “For a statement, the entire team should have stayed home.”

    Is it not inappropriate to decorate the street, given the human rights violations in Qatar? “I’m just allowed to do this. We didn’t hesitate about decorations,” Renders says. “The whole team should have stayed home if they wanted to make a statement,” the local resident concludes the discussion.

    The Dutch national team left for Qatar towards the end of the morning on Tuesday for the World Cup football. The Orange lands in Qatar on Tuesday evening around six o’clock Dutch time. The first real training is scheduled for Wednesday.

    The tournament starts next Sunday. The Netherlands will start the championship in group A and will play against Senegal on November 21. This is followed by matches against Ecuador and host country Qatar.

    The Ahornstraat in Breda (photo: Omroep Brabant).
    The Ahornstraat in Breda (photo: Omroep Brabant).

    Nel Holzken is proud of her street (photo: Raymond Merkx).
    Nel Holzken is proud of her street (photo: Raymond Merkx).

    The Merwedelaan in Eindhoven (photo: Omroep Brabant).
    The Merwedelaan in Eindhoven (photo: Omroep Brabant).

    The 72-year-old local resident Tinus Renders in front of his Oranjehuis (photo: Raymond Merkx).
    The 72-year-old local resident Tinus Renders in front of his Oranjehuis (photo: Raymond Merkx).

    ttn-32