Siebe Van der Heyden believes playing abroad increases chances of international selection

Following their 2-1 win over Mechelen at the weekend, Union St Gilloise are closing the gap to league leaders Genk. The difference is just three points, with the top four having their points halved during the play-offs. Union’s 24-year-old defender Siebe Van Der Heyden was asked following the game why he felt he wasn’t included in Domenico Tedesco’s first Belgian squad. As reported by Het Nieuwsblad, Van der Heyden said ‘I’m really sorry I’m not there, but sometimes you might have to play in a higher league to have a chance to be selected’.

The defender went on to say he felt there were a few other players in Belgium’s domestic league who probably deserved a call-up. Only two players from the Belgian Pro League made it into Tedesco’s selection, both being Anderlecht defenders. Zeno Debast was joined by the veteran Jan Vertonghen in the squad.

Another former Anderlecht player has had to drop out due to injury. Jeremy Doku is not fit enough to take part in the games against Sweden and Germany. Tedesco has turned to PSV teenager and PSG transfer target Johan Bakayoko to fill the vacancy, with the 19-year-old moving up from the U23 side.

GBeNeFN | Ben Jackson

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