Depay pulls out of Nations League finals

June 6, 2023 _ AMSTERDAM (Reuters) – Memphis Depay has withdrawn because of injury while Daley Blind and Tijjani Reijnders have been trimmed from the final Netherlands squad for this month’s Nations League finals, the Dutch football association said.

Coach Ronald Koeman had named 26 players last week for the finals but had to cut it to 23 by midnight on Monday for the four-team tournament the Dutch are hosting. They will meet World Cup semi-finalists Croatia in the first semi-final in Rotterdam on June 14.

The 29-year-old Depay suffered a hamstring injury at the end of March during the European Championship qualifier international match against Gibraltar and was sidelined for more than a month. He returned to score a goal in LaLiga but then suffered a calf injury in training which has kept him out since.

Depay, with 44 goals in 88 appearances for the Dutch team, has struggled with injury in recent years. He was sidelined for almost seven months in late 2019 with a serious knee injury. Last season he was absent at Barcelona for almost three months due to thigh, Achilles tendon and hamstring injuries.

The Dutch began their preparations for the tournament, where Italy and Spain clash in the other semi-final on June 15 and the deciding matches are played on June 18, with a training camp on Monday.

All players called up were in attendance save for defenders Nathan Ake and Denzel Dumfries, who will go up against each other in the Champions League final on Saturday.


Goalkeepers: Justin Bijlow (Feyenoord), Mark Flekken (SC Freiburg), Andries Noppert (Heerenveen)

Defenders: Nathan Ake (Manchester City), Sven Botman (Newcastle United), Matthijs de Ligt (Bayern Munich), Denzel Dumfries (Inter Milan), Lutsharel Geertruida (Feyenoord), Tyrell Malacia (Manchester United), Jurrien Timber (Ajax Amsterdam), Virgil van Dijk (Liverpool)

Midfielders: Frenkie de Jong (Barcelona), Marten de Roon (Atalanta), Teun Koopmeiners (Atalanta), Noa Lang (Club Brugge), Joey Veerman (PSV Eindhoven), Mats Wieffer (Feyenoord), Georginio Wijnaldum (AS Roma)

Forwards: Steven Bergwijn (Ajax Amsterdam), Cody Gakpo (Liverpool), Donyell Malen (Borussia Dortmund), Xavi Simons (PSV Eindhoven), Wout Weghorst (Manchester United).

(Writing by Mark Gleeson in Cape Town; Editing by Kim Coghill)

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