By Guus Hetterscheid
Schalke striker Klaas-Jan Huntelaar says Wesley Sneijder must rediscover his form at Galatasaray before he can think about receiving a call up to Netherlands.
The former Inter star was seen as one of the world's best in 2010, helping the Nerazzurri to win an unprecedented treble under Jose Mourinho but, following a loss of form at Galatasaray, was stripped of the captaincy in June this year for the Oranje.
His dramatic tumble from the top all but confirmed after national boss Louis van Gaal chose to omit Sneijder from the squad for their friendly against Portugal this week.
And Huntelaar says even established players can lose their berth in the country's squad if they fail to impress at their clubs, he told Goal: "Wesley is normally a part of our team.
"It's important for him to show himself at his club. If you play well at club level, then, you deserve an invitation for the national team. That's the way it goes."
Meanwhile, Rafael van der Vaart has voiced his regret that Sneijder had not made it into the team this time.
However, he agreed with his Bundesliga colleague Huntelaar that the Galatasaray midfielder needs to improve his game in the Turkish league in order to be considered by the national coach in the future.
"That Wesley has not been called up, surprised me. But the coach is always been clear in his explanation," he said.
"I also wasn't called up a few times. You try to cope with that by working hard and getting back in the team quickly.
"It's good for me to come now. Portugal away is a great match. Even when it's just a friendly."
Following the Portugal clash Van Gaal's men face Estonia and Andorra in September as part of their World Cup qualifying efforts, in which they currently top Group D with a seven-point lead over Hungary.