Soccer-New goalkeeper picked for injury-depleted Netherlands squad


FILE PHOTO: Soccer Football - Euro 2024 Qualifier - Group B - Republic of Ireland v Netherlands - Aviva Stadium, Dublin, Republic of Ireland - September 10, 2023 Netherlands coach Ronald Koeman reacts REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne/File Photo

AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - Netherlands named a new goalkeeping option for this month’s two European Championship qualifiers against France and Greece but must do without key injured players as they battle for a place at next year’s finals in Germany.

Coach Ronald Koeman on Friday named uncapped Nick Olij from Sparta Rotterdam in place of Andries Noppert, who was the team’s first choice goalkeeper at last year’s World Cup but has been dropped.

Injury to Frenkie de Jong, Matthijs de Ligt, Cody Gakpo and Memphis Depay leaves the Dutch depleted for the clashes against France in Amsterdam on Oct. 13 and Greece away in Athens on Oct. 16.

Koeman has recalled the Ajax Amsterdam striking duo Steven Bergwijn and Brian Brobbey as well as the German-based wingback Jeremie Frimpong, who has been called up previously but is yet to win a cap.

The Dutch have nine points from four matches in Group B, six behind leaders France, who have a 100% record. Greece are also on nine points but have played one match more than the Dutch while Ireland are in fourth spot in the group on three points.

Squad

Goalkeepers: Mark Flekken (Brentford), Nick Olij (Sparta Rotterdam), Bart Verbruggen (Brighton & Hove Albion)

Defenders: Nathan Ake (Manchester City), Daley Blind (Girona), Stefan de Vrij, Denzel Dumfries (both Inter Milan), Lutsharel Geertruida, Quilindschy Hartman (both Feyenoord), Micky van de Ven (Tottenham Hotspur), Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool)

Midfielders: Marten de Roon (Atalanta), Jeremie Frimpong (Bayer Leverkusen), Teun Koopmeiners (Atalanta), Tijjani Reijnders (AC Milan), Joey Veerman (PSV Eindhoven), Mats Wieffer (Feyenoord)

Forwards: Steven Berghuis, Steven Bergwijn, Brian Brobbey (all Ajax Amsterdam), Noa Lang (PSV Eindhoven), Donyell Malen (Borussia Dortmund), Xavi Simons (RB Leipzig), Wout Weghorst (TSG Hoffenheim).

(Writing by Mark Gleeson in Cape Town; Editing by Christian Radnedge)

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