Van Gaal: Sneijder remains key for Netherlands

The Galatasaray midfielder has been assured of his place in the Oranje setup by his national team coach
Netherlands boss Louis van Gaal has insisted that Wesley Sneijder remains a key player for the national side and added that his captaincy gives him an additional importance.

The attacking midfielder was forced to withdraw from the squad for Tuesday's qualifier against Romania after picking up a muscular problem against Estonia on Friday, but Van Gaal has assured Sneijder that he has no reason to worry about his future with Oranje.

"Sneijder is my captain and I will not drop him just like that," Van Gaal stated at a press conference.

"Sneijder, [Rafael] van der Vaart and [Adam] Maher are the candidates for the No.10 position. That's why I added Maher to the team when Wesley had to pull out.

"The hierarchy can change a bit based on their performances and club form.

"And perhaps there could be a fourth candidate for that position in [Tonny] Vilhena. He has played as a No.10 at Feyenoord a few times and has done a good job there."

Netherlands currently sit five points clear at the top of Group D, with 15 points from five games.