July 9, 2010 / 2:51 PM / 10 years ago

Profile of Netherlands squad

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Penpix of Netherlands’ 23-man squad at the World Cup in South Africa:

1-Maarten Stekelenburg (Ajax Amsterdam). Goalkeeper. Born September 22 1982. Caps 33. Goals 0.

First-choice goalkeeper since Edwin van der Sar quit after the Euro 2008 finals. Deaf in one ear, Stekelenburg has shown his best form during this World Cup campaign with two clean sheets and made a crucial save from Kaka in the quarter-final against Brazil.

16-Michel Vorm (Utrecht). Goalkeeper. Born October 20 1983. Caps 4. Goals 0.

Athletic keeper who has been the first choice at mid-table Utrecht since 2006 after one season on loan at second division side Den Bosch. Has a calming influence in goal. Produced an outstanding performance in his last appearance at Hampden Park in the final World Cup qualifying match against Scotland. Is considered the stand-in for Stekelenburg.

22-Sander Boschker (Twente Enschede). Goalkeeper. Born October 20 1970. Caps 1. Goals 0.

Holds the record for Dutch league appearances for a single club with 543. A solid keeper with 19 years of league experience. Won the Dutch championship with Twente last season and is in the World Cup squad as third choice keeper.

2-Gregory van der Wiel (Ajax Amsterdam). Defender. Born Feb 3 1988. Caps 14. Goals 0.

Offensive fullback, Van Der Wiel is the youngest player of the Dutch squad and has featured in four of the six matches. Was rested for the match against Cameroon and missed the semi-final through suspension but should be back for the final.

15-Edson Braafheid (Celtic). Defender. Born April 8 1983. Caps 7. Goals 0.

Left fullback who is second choice behind Giovanni van Bronckhorst. A fast, solid defender he has yet to feature in South Africa.

4-Joris Mathijsen (Hamburg SV). Defender. Born April 5 1980. Caps 61. Goals 3.

Was criticised by the Dutch media before the tournament but has replied with some solid defensive work to appease fears about the defence. Missed only the quarter-final against Brazil when he pulled out with a knee injury during the warming up but returned for the semi-final.

3-John Heitinga (Everton). Defender. Born November 15 1983. Caps 60. Goals 6.

Heitinga has proved a merciless central defender who has not missed a minute so far of the tournament. He has formed a solid pairing with Mathijsen.

13-Andre Ooijer (PSV Eindhoven). Defender. Born July 11 1974. Caps 55. Goals 3.

Experienced defender, who can play on the right or in the centre. Has made one appearance in South Africa, starting the quarter-final against Brazil. Ooijer overcame a wavering start to earn the plaudits after being a late stand in for Mathijsen, who injured himself in the warmup.

5-Giovanni van Bronckhorst (Feyenoord), Defender. Born February 5 1975. Caps 105. Goals 6.

Experienced first choice left back who started his career as playmaker in the Feyenoord youth side. He became the fourth Dutch player to reach 100 caps in the opening win over Denmark. Scored arguably the goal of the tournament when he blasted home a 35 metre drive to open the scoring against Uruguay in the semi-final. The final will be his last outing as player.

12-Khalid Boulahrouz (VFB Stuttgart). Defender. Born December 28 1981. Caps 31. Goals 0.

The tough tackling defender has been frequently injured over the last three years. In South Africa he has been second choice, making two appearances as a stand-in for right back Gregory van der Wiel.

8-Nigel de Jong (Manchester City). Midfielder. Born November 30 1984. Caps 47. Goals 1.

Together with Mark van Bommel, De Jong has been responsible for the defensive balance in the Dutch team. The tough-tackling midfielder missed only the semi-final match against Uruguay but is sure to return for the final.

6-Mark van Bommel (Bayern Munich). Midfielder. Born April 22 1977. Caps 62. Goals 10.

Came back from international retirement under coach Bert van Marwijk, who is his father-in-law. Has played every minute in South Africa and has been a rock in midfield, providing defensive cover.

18-Stijn Schaars (AZ Alkmaar). Midfielder. Born January 11 1984. Caps 12. Goals 0.

Stylish midfielder and skipper of the Dutch under-21 team that won the 2006 European title. Has yet to feature in South Africa and is unlikely to play in the final.

23-Rafael van der Vaart (Real Madrid). Midfielder. Born February 11 1983. Caps 82. Goals 16.

The creative left footer started the group stage matches but then pick up a slight calf injury and lost his spot to winger Arjen Robben. Van der Vaart did return in the semi-final win over Uruguay with a good performance in the second half as a substitute.

10-Wesley Sneijder (Inter Milan). Midfielder. Born June 9 1984. Caps 67. Goals 19.

Attacking, free-scoring midfielder who could become the first player to win a domestic league and cup double, Champions League and World Cup in the same season. Sneijder is also on track to become player of the tournament having already won four man-of-the-match awards after scoring five goals in six matches to make him joint top scorer.

14-Demy de Zeeuw (Ajax Amsterdam). Midfielder. Born May 26 1983. Caps 27. Goals 0.

Holding midfielder who made his debut for the national team in 2007. Has made one appearance in the tournament, starting the semi-final against Uruguay when he replaced the suspended Nigel de Jong, but was substituted at halftime after he was hit in the face by a Martin Caceres foot.

20-Ibrahim Afellay (PSV Eindhoven). Midfielder. Born April 2 1986. Caps 26. Goals 0.

Playmaker who made his debut aged 17 for PSV Eindhoven and won four successive championships with them. Afellay has a lot of competition for the offensive midfield positions but has come on three times during this campaign and shown good form.

11-Arjen Robben (Bayern Munich). Winger. Born January 23 1984. Caps 51. Goals 15.

The flying winger was in sensational form for his club Bayern Munich but missed the first two group stage matches after picking up a hamstring injury a week before the start of the tournament. Made his first appearance against Cameroon and has started every match of the knockout stages and scored twice.

9-Robin van Persie (Arsenal). Forward. Born August 6 1983. Caps 50. Goals 19.

The Arsenal striker missed five months of the season after surgery on an injured ankle returning to score four goals in three warm-up matches but has not fulfilled the towering expectations in South Africa, scoring only once.

7-Dirk Kuyt (Liverpool). Winger/Striker. Born July 22 1980. Caps 69. Goals 16.

Kuyt started his career as central striker but now mainly plays from the right flank. Has played in all six matches in South Africa and has been praised for his labour and spirit.

19-Ryan Babel (Liverpool). Winger. Born December 19 1986. Caps 39. Goals 5.

Talented winger who scored on his debut for the Dutch side in Romania in 2005. Performs as a rapper in England and the Netherlands under the name Rio but has yet to feature in South Africa.

21-Klaas-Jan Huntelaar (AC Milan). Striker. Born August 12 1983. Caps 36. Goals 16.

The prolific striker scored 109 goals in 148 league matches during spells at Heerenveen and Ajax Amsterdam before moving to Real Madrid and then AC Milan. Has come on four times during the World Cup and scored the winner against Cameroon in the final group stage match, netting a rebound after Arjen Robben’s shot hit the post.

17-Eljero Elia (Hamburg SV). Winger. Born February 13 1987. Caps 14. Goals 2.

Won his first cap in September 2009 in a friendly against Japan and four days later came up with a stylish goal that earned the Netherlands a 1-0 win at Hampden Park in their final World Cup qualifying match against Scotland. He has reproduced his outstanding form in South Africa where he has come on as substitute in five matches.

Writing by Theo Ruizenaar; Editing by Patrick Johnston

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