This is a nation which continually produces some of the world's top footballers - an admirable feat considering they are a nation of just 17 million or so - but they fall well short of the mark as often as they live up to their potential.
The Dutch arrived in Poland and Ukraine as many people's third favourites. They were fancied enough that the tag of dark horses would not have done them any justice. And yet, as two defeats leave them bottom of Group B, they are on the verge of going home at the first hurdle.
The fact they were runners-up at the World Cup two years ago - having taken Spain to extra time in the final - makes their poor showing this summer even more surprising.
Something similar happened at the 1990 World Cup, which they arrived at as European champions: they could only get three draws in our group. Fortunately for them, only the bottom side in each group and the two worst third-placed teams were eliminated at that stage back then. In any case, they went out in the next round via a loss to West Germany which saw Frank Rijkaard infamously spit at Rudi Voller and get sent off.
This year it is again the Germans who have all but sent the Dutch packing before many expected them to bow out. Arjen Robben's long walk around the pitch may not be anywhere near as shameful as Rijkaard's behaviour was, but it must still have been another blow to morale inside the camp.
Before Robben's moping we had reports of several players falling out with each other and Rafael van der Vaart publicly complaining about Bert van Marwijk not picking him, which is hardly how a vice captain should be behaving.
Considering how successful many of the Dutch squad are as club footballers, it is strange that they cannot get their act together when representing their country. Such an honour should be more than enough to make players put aside any differences they may have, but the Dutch seem to decide a major finals is the time to air them.
Perhaps it is because most of them, especially the top stars, play most of their careers abroad and are therefore not as familiar with each other. Apart from the three PSV Eindhoven players in the squad, no one member of the Dutch squad plays at the same club as another.
Contrast that with Germany, who had seven Bayern Munich players in their starting line-up on Wednesday, and another came off the bench.
Whatever the reason, the Dutch FA need to make a real concerted effort to get to the root of the problem and eradicate it. It has been going on for so long now that it has ceased to be a cliche and is now a fact.
It is ridiculous that players from such a talented footballing nation continue to be the architects of their own downfall. Get to grips with the disharmony in the international set-up and surely a trophy will follow.
But even if a solution is found and a new, friendlier Dutch squad does not yield a trophy, at least the fans who have made the journey to support their team at such great expense and inconvenience will be guaranteed to see a group of players striving the best they can to represent their country well, rather than the rowing and sulking bunch they are subjected to watching now.
That is as much the governing body's responsibility as the results on the pitch. Perhaps it is even more important.