AMSTERDAM (Reuters) - Virgil van Dijk was called into the Netherlands squad for the first time on Monday as two more players pulled out of two upcoming matches, the Dutch football association (KNVB) announced.
The 23-year-old Celtic centre back comes in for Ron Vlaar, who withdrew with a calf injury picked up playing in Aston Villa’s 2-1 win over Hull City on Sunday.
The Netherlands play a friendly against Italy in Bari on Thursday and then next Tuesday meet the Czech Republic in Prague in a Euro 2016 qualifier.
Gregory van der Wiel of Paris St Germain returns to the squad for the first time since before the World Cup in Brazil in place of Jordy Clasie of Feyenoord, who pulled out with a hamstring injury,
Earlier, the German-based trio of Arjen Robben, Klaas Jan Huntelaar and Rafael van der Vaart withdrew from the squad.
Attacking midfielder Luciano Narsingh of PSV Eindhoven, who has scored twice in seven international appearances, was called up as cover as the squad numbers for the two matches were cut from 25 to 23.
Robben has an ankle injury, Huntelaar is sick and Van der Vaart has a muscle strain.
Reporting by Mark Gleeson; Editing by Tony Goodson