Sneijder shocked at 'painful' Oranje captaincy loss

The former Inter playmaker is going through a difficult period as he has lost the captain's armband, while Galatasaray seem ready to cash in on him
Wesley Sneijder admits it was a "huge blow" and "painful" to hear he had been stripped of Netherlands' captaincy.

The Galatasaray midfielder was named Holland skipper when Louis van Gaal replaced Bert van Marwijk as national team coach after Euro 2012.

But the Dutch boss has now gone with Manchester United star Robin van Persie as he is not satisfied with Sneijder's fitness.

"It was a pretty painful announcement. Not just because I never saw this coming, but also because I have always given my all in the role as captain. I will have to accept this, though," Sneijder told De Telegraaf.

"It was a huge blow for me. The coach told me that I should focus on myself for now and use my energy to regain top fitness. I was planning to do that any way, though. I am more eager than ever before.

"I know that I have not shown enough recently and that I will have to step it up a notch. But I am confident that I can reach my level from the 2010 World Cup and Euro 2012 again."

Van Gaal's decision to drop Sneijder as Oranje captain was another disappointment for the former Inter star after Galatasaray president Unal Aysal said the Turkish giants are ready to sell him following his below-par performances since his winter move.

"I have been following the rumours about Sneijder, but we have not received an offer for him. If an offer in the region of €15 million comes in, we might decide to sell him, though," Aysal told Sabah.

The 29-year-old has a contract with the Istanbul giants until 2016, but he stated last week he would be keen to be reunited with Jose Mourinho at Chelsea.