September 19 2014 Latest news:
Tuesday, March 11, 2014
Norwich City midfielder Leroy Fer has been given an added incentive to recover from a hamstring injury after being tipped as a World Cup replacement for the stricken Kevin Strootman.
Strootman was due to be one of Holland manager Louis van Gaal’s “untouchables” in Brazil but suffered a serious knee injury during Roma’s 1-0 defeat to Napoli and will now miss the World Cup.
This has potentially cleared the path for Fer, who is currently recovering from a hamstring injury but is expected to figure for the Canaries between now and the end of the season.
Van Gaal confirmed Strootman’s absence yesterday, telling KNVB.nl: “This is dramatic for Kevin. I can imagine that his world collapsed. Kevin stood with both his club AS Roma, as with Oranje for a very important period. Kevin had a very big contribution to our qualification for the World Cup in Brazil. But the worst is for Kevin, who sees his dreams are shattered.”
Fer faces competition from the likes of Nigel de Jong and Daley Blind for a place in the first XI but is likely to be in Van Gaal’s squad if there aren’t any hitches in his recuperation from injury.
Ricky van Wolfswinkel is also still in Van Gaal’s thoughts although his case has been undermined by an indifferent first season at Carrow Road following his big money move from Sporting Lisbon.
Holland have been placed in Group B in Brazil where they will come up against Spain, Chile and Australia.