World Cup Netherlands squad
Dutch football expert Peter McVitie picks out the key men in Manchester United's manager-in-waiting Louis van Gaal's provisional Holland squad and assesses their chances in Brazil as they look for a first World Cup triumph.
Who's in (30-man provisional squad)
Goalkeepers: Goalkeepers: Jasper Cillessen (Ajax), Michel Vorm (Swansea City), Tim Krul (Newcastle United), Jeroen Zoet (PSV)
Defenders: Paul Verhaegh (Augsburg), Patrick van Aanholt (Vitesse), Daryl Janmaat (Feyenoord), Joel Veltman (Ajax), Stefan de Vrij (Feyenoord), Ron Vlaar (Aston Villa), Bruno Martins Indi (Feyenoord), Karim Rekik (PSV), Terence Kongolo (Feyenoord), Daley Blind (Ajax)
The future is Oranje: Holland hope to win their first World Cup in Brazil after losing three previous finals
Going Dutch: Louis van Gaal will lead Holland at the World Cup finals before being expected at Old Trafford
Midfielders: Leroy Fer (Norwich City), Nigel de Jong (AC Milan), Jordy Clasie (Feyenoord), Jonathan de Guzman (Swansea City), Georginio Wijnaldum (PSV), Wesley Sneijder (Galatasaray), Rafael van der Vaart (Hamburg), Tonny Vilhena (Feyenoord)
Forwards: Quincy Promes (Twente), Arjen Robben (Bayern Munich), Jean-Paul Boetius (Feyenoord), Robin van Persie (Manchester United), Klaas-Jan Huntelaar (Schalke), Dirk Kuyt (Fenerbahce), Jeremain Lens (Dynamo Kiev), Memphis Depay (PSV)
Who misses out?
Gregory van der Wiel’s absence - by his own request as he has a severe knee injury - is a big disappointment for the Netherlands as Louis van Gaal is set to switch to a 5-3-2 system and Van der Wiel’s attacking nature would have added a lot to the team.
So close: Holland were beaten by Andres Iniesta's goal for Spain in the 2010 World Cup final
Biggest selection headline
In a team full of bright young players, it’s somewhat a surprise to see Ajax’s Young Player of the Davy Klaassen miss out.
Feyenoord youngster Kongolo is the surprise inclusion. The 20-year-old defender only became a regular for his club after the turn of the year and is yet to make his debut for the national team.
Feyenoord youngster Clasie could be given a chance in the centre of midfield. The 22-year-old is a very special talent with excellent passing ability and is a very strong tackler as well. If the 5’ 7” central midfielder gets a chance in the team, he will impress more than a few spectators and it will see the speculation surrounding his future increase even more as a move away from Holland looks likely this summer.
Van Persie will be the team’s main striker and, Van Gaal says, is one of only two players who are guaranteed a spot in his final 23-man squad – the other being Robben.
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