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Dutch captain Robin van Persie doubtful for FIFA World Cup semi-final

Wednesday, 9 July 2014 - 8:59am IST | Agency: PTI

Netherlands captain Robin van Persie is a doubt for his side's World Cup semi-final against Argentina tomorrow with a stomach problem, coach Louis van Gaal said. "Robin van Persie has an intestinal problem and I didn't want to take a risk," said van Gaal on the Manchester United striker, who trained apart from his team-mates this morning.

Asked if van Persie would be fit enough to line up against Argentina at Sao Paulo's Corinthians Arena, van Gaal replied: "I don't know. "Tomorrow (Wednesday), I'll have to take all these decisions, not today. We have more than 24 hours before the match and Robin van Persie is a very important player for us. "In principle, my captains always play, but only if they're 100 percent." 

Right-back Daryl Janmaat also trained apart from the main group at Sao Paulo's Estadio do Pacaembu and van Gaal revealed that he, too, was suffering from a stomach complaint. However, there was better news for van Gaal concerning the fitness of Nigel de Jong and Ron Vlaar, both of whom trained alongside the rest of their team-mates. 

De Jong had been effectively ruled out of the tournament with a groin injury, while Vlaar was considered a serious doubt to face Argentina due to a knee problem. 

While van Gaal was delighted to see both players back on the training pitch, he said it was too early to say whether or not they would be able to face Lionel Messi and his Argentina team-mates.

Asked if De Jong would be fit to play, van Gaal told his pre-match press conference: "I have no idea. "He tried today in training. We'll now have to see how his body reacts. Let's wait for tomorrow, and for Vlaar as well."


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