Saturday, December 5, 2020

Ihattaren and Schuurs get first Netherlands call-ups, Blind left out after health scare

SoccerNews in Eredivisie 28 Aug 2020

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Netherlands interim coach Dwight Lodeweges has handed maiden senior call-ups to promising youngsters Mohamed Ihattaren, Perr Schuurs and Owen Wijndal for their upcoming Nations League fixtures against Poland and Italy.

Lodeweges, who was assistant to Ronald Koeman until his departure to Barcelona earlier this month, had the responsibility of selecting the full squad for the first time.

He has taken the opportunity to introduce fresh faces and recall some familiar ones not seen in the selection for several years, while Juventus centre-back Matthijs de Ligt remains sidelined after knee surgery.

Attacking midfielder Ihattaren impressed in his 22 Eredivisie appearances for PSV in 2019-20 and declared for the Netherlands last year having also been eligible for Morocco.

Ball-playing centre-back Schuurs broke into Ajax’s first-team squad before Dutch football was halted by the coronavirus pandemic.

Similarly, attack-minded left-back Wijndal – also 20 years old, like Ihattaren and Schuurs – earned rave reviews with AZ prior to the 2019-20 campaign being cancelled.

While those three will be hoping for their first caps, Leroy Fer and Tim Krul are aiming to return to action with the national side after significant periods away.

Krul last played for his country in October 2015, while Fer’s absence has been 11 months longer – he featured most recently against Mexico in November 2014.

Daley Blind was among several on the provisional list, but he has been discarded after a recent health scare in an Ajax friendly.

The centre-back, who was last year fitted with a subcutaneous implantable cardioverter defibrillator after being diagnosed with heart muscle inflammation, collapsed in the meeting with Hertha Berlin but insisted he was “feeling fine” when he provided an update on Wednesday.

Myron Boadu, Teun Koopmeiners and Calvin Stengs were among the more surprising omissions of those on the provisional list.

The Netherlands face Poland on September 4 and Italy three days later.

Netherlands squad in full:

Jasper Cillessen (Valencia), Marco Bizot  (AZ), Tim Krul (Norwich City); Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool), Denzel Dumfries (PSV), Nathan Ake (Manchester City), Hans Hateboer (Atalanta), Perr Schuurs (Ajax), Joel Veltman (Brighton and Hove Albion), Stefan de Vrij (Inter), Owen Wijndal (AZ); Donny van de Beek (Ajax), Leroy Fer (Feyenoord), Mohamed Ihattaren (PSV), Frenkie de Jong (Barcelona), Marten de Roon (Atalanta), Kevin Strootman (Marseille), Georginio Wijnaldum (Liverpool); Luuk de Jong (Sevilla), Quincy Promes (Ajax), Ryan Babel (Galatasaray), Steven Bergwijn (Tottenham).

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