Louis van Gaal has admitted that Netherlands players not starting at their clubs is ‘a problem’ for the team ahead of the World Cup.
Two of Oranje’s most important players, Frenkie de Jong and Memphis Depay, were linked with moves away from Barcelona all summer but ended up staying put.
As a result, neither is likely to get much playing time ahead of the World Cup with Xavi not including either player in his first-choice starting XI.
Van Gaal says that’s a problem, and that he’ll have to veer away from his usual philosophy of picking players that regularly play at club level.
“Players who do not play weekly at their clubs, I will still have to select,” he said in Algemeen Dagblad.
“In other words: selecting players because of their qualities and not because of what they deliver to their clubs. That’s a problem.
“Only, in the current time, in which clubs have very large selections, I can’t do otherwise.”
One player who is playing regularly is Steven Bergwijn, who has been hugely impressive since joining Ajax, but Van Gaal doesn’t consider him or any other player the team’s star man.
“I don’t think in terms like ‘best player’. It’s about the team. The best team eventually wins the World Cup. I hope we have the best team,” he added.