It’s Willem van Hanegem’s birthday! Today (Wednesday) he celebrates reaching the magnificent age of 75. Management, sup...
Dirk Kuyt and Romeo Castelen have been included in the Dutch squad for two of the country’s up-and-coming internationals. The lowlanders face Liechtenstein in a friendly on 3 September in preparation for the Netherlands’ first World Cup qualifier against the Czech Republic five days later. Kuyt’s inclusion surprised him. ‘I was disappointed when I wasn’t included for the Sweden game. To avoid being disappointed again I assumed I wouldn’t be called up.’
Kuyt has been in blazing form for weeks. ‘The whole time I was thinking my chance would come as long as I kept up my form. My selection now for a match ‘for real’ shows how serious this is. I hope I get a chance and am able to show what I can do in Oranje.’
Romeo Castelen is carrying a slight knock, but he will be hooking up with the national squad Monday too. ‘After consulting the medical staff at Feyenoord and the KNVB [Dutch FA] I’ve decided to continue you my rehab with Oranje,’ explained Castelen, who was forced out of the Willem II game with a minor hamstring injury. ‘I’ll probably be available to play against Liechtenstein, so the national coach can use me in the match against the Czech Republic. I didn’t expect to be selected, because I’m not fit. It shows his confidence in me that he is taking me despite my injury. I seem to have made a good impression against Sweden. I hope I can repay the confidence Van Basten has shown in me on the pitch.’