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Sneijder becomes new captain of Dutch national soccer team

08-15-2012 17:45 BJT

THE HAGUE, Aug. 15 (Xinhua) -- Wesley Sneijder had replaced Mark van Bommel as new captain of the Dutch national team, Dutch head coach Louis van Gaal announced ahead of Wednesday's soccer friendly with Belgium in Brussels.

Van Bommel announced his retirement from the national team after the early exit at Euro 2012. The 28-year-old Sneijder played 87 internationals and was already considered as the natural leader of the Dutch team. Dirk Kuyt was appointed as second captain.

Van Gaal also announced to opt for a 4-3-3 system, instead of the 4-2-3-1 of his predecessor Bert van Marwijk. Klaas-Jan Huntelaar will be his first choice as central striker, while Robin van Persie has to settle for a place on the bench.

"Van Persie and Huntelaar should fight for their place," Van Gaal said during a press conference on Tuesday. "But at this moment I choose Huntelaar, because Van Persie has shown too little on that position in the Dutch team, while Huntelaar performed well."

Van Gaal also revealed his line-up for the match against Belgium. He will start with debutant Ricardo van Rhijn of Ajax as right back, while in the second half Stefan de Vrij, Bruno Martins Indi (both Feyenoord), Nick Viergever and Adam Maher (both AZ) will play for the Dutch team for the first time.



Editor:James |Source: Xinhua

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