With Louis van Gaal looking increasingly likely to use a five-defender setup in Brazil, the Netherlands has named preliminary World Cup squad rich in defenders from Feyenoord – the Eredivisie club that used its 5-3-2 formation to claim second place in this year’s domestic league. With Daryl Janmaat, Stefan de Vrij, Bruno Martins Indi, and the uncapped Angola-born Terence Kongolo called in, four of the club’s five starting defenders are part of the Dutch’s defense-heavy 30-man squad.
De Stadionclub’s 19-year-old midfielder Tonny Vilhena is another of van Gaal’s uncapped selections ona squad that includes mainstays Robin van Persie (pictured), Arjen Robben, and Wesley Sneijder. Nigel de Jong, Rafael van der Vaart, and Dirk Kuyt also return from the team which lost to Spain in the 2010 World Cup final.
The most notable omission is Paris Saint-Germain’s Gregory van der Weil – a starter on the 2010 team. The right back started 24 league games for PSG yet failed to claim a spot in van Gaal’s 30-man team.
Netherlands, grouped with Australia, Chile, and Spain, opens its World Cup on June 13.
Goalkeepers: Jasper Cillessen (Ajax), Michel Vorm (Swansea City), Tim Krul (Newcastle United), Jeroen Zoet (PSV)
Defenders: Paul Verhaegh (Augsburg), Patrick van Aanholt (Vitesse), Daryl Janmaat (Feyenoord), Joel Veltman (Ajax), Stefan de Vrij (Feyenoord), Ron Vlaar (Aston Villa), Bruno Martins Indi (Feyenoord), Karim Rekik (PSV), Terence Kongolo (Feyenoord), Daley Blind (Ajax)
Midfielders: Leroy Fer (Norwich City), Nigel de Jong (AC Milan), Jordy Clasie (Feyenoord), Jonathan de Guzman (Swansea City), Georginio Wijnaldum (PSV), Wesley Sneijder (Galatasaray), Rafael van der Vaart (Hamburg), Tonny Vilhena (Feyenoord)
Forwards: Quincy Promes (Twente), Arjen Robben (Bayern Munich), Jean-Paul Boetius (Feyenoord), Robin van Persie (Manchester United), Klaas-Jan Huntelaar (Schalke), Dirk Kuyt (Fenerbahce), Jeremain Lens (Dynamo Kiev), Memphis Depay (PSV)