Knee injury keeps Van der Wiel out of World Cup

The former Ajax defender has revealed that he was not included in Oranje's provisional squad due to a persistent knee problem

Paris Saint-Germain defender Gregory van der Wiel has confirmed he was forced to rule himself out of Netherlands ' World Cup squad due to a knee injury.

The right-back was not named in Louis van Gaal's preliminary squad for the finals, but he has now made it clear that the decision was his own.

Van der Wiel has featured on 35 occasions for PSG this season but a persistent knee injury has caught up with him and the 26-year-old would not have been fully fit for the competition.

"I called the coach and said that it really was not possible," he told AD . "I have suffered too long with my knee. I have had irritation of the tendon in my knee cap, I have played all year round with painkillers.

"I cannot do a full workout.

"I have been in consultation with the doctors and the coach, and made the decision not to go. It is a decision that I have taken with my head and not my heart.

"Brazil would have seemed to me really beautiful, but if you play for your country you should be as fit as a fiddle.

"Doctor [Edwin] Goedhart of the Dutch team also rightly said: 'your health comes first'.

"Otherwise there could be chronic injury in the future. I need to be careful."

Netherlands meet Spain, Chile and Australia in Group B.