Michael Reiziger has announced his international retirement as Marco van Basten named his first provisional squad as Netherlands coach.
The full-back was omitted from a 25-man party that will be pruned down on 12 August ahead of the friendly in Sweden six days later. After Frank de Boer and Jaap Stam retired from international football following UEFA EURO 2004™, and Marc Overmars quit playing due to injury, Van Basten revealed that the 31-year-old Reiziger had also stepped down.
Stam stays put
"After his transfer to Middlesbrough [FC], it has all become too much for him, and he told me he would quit the national team," Van Basten said, before admitting that he had tried unsuccessfully to talk Stam round. "He [Stam] sent a letter to us in which he said there was no use contacting him about a return, because he wants to spend the free Wednesdays with his family."
Van Nistelrooij dropped
Paul Bosvelt and Ronald Waterreus are also left out, along with Ruud van Nistelrooij. "He is suspended for the first two [FIFA] World Cup qualifiers, and I have personally told him I only want to practise with players I can then use," the newly-appointed coach said of the striker. "In the third match he will return."
Van Basten has called up ten players who were not in the squad at EURO 2004™: goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg; defenders Kevin Hofland, Nigel de Jong and Pascal Bosschaart; midfield players Mark van Bommel, Denny Landzaat, Jan Kromkamp and Romeo Castelen; and forwards Dirk Kuyt and Robin van Persie.
Meanwhile, Stam, Overmars and Frank and Ronald de Boer will be given an official send-off at the Amsterdam ArenA before the opening World Cup qualifier against the Czech Republic on 8 September.
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