Football Football

Robben to play in Netherlands-Bayern friendly


THE HAGUE, Netherlands, May 21 – Arjen Robben will play in a friendly match in Munich this week between the Netherlands and Bayern Munich, Dutch coach Bert van Marwijk said on Monday, but added that the striker would start on the bench.

“He’s contractually obliged to play on Tuesday. But it doesn’t say anywhere for how long,” Van Marwijk told Dutch media.

The Oranje are playing the beaten Champions League finalists on Tuesday in a match organised to compensate Bayern for Robben being injured while playing for his country in 2010, which prevented him from playing domestic football for several months.

“I’ve had a chat with Arjen. He’s really down (after losing the Champions League final to Chelsea). It’s only logical.”

Robben missed a penalty kick in the tie which Chelsea eventually won 4-3 on penalties after the match had ended 1-1 after extra-time.

“All the players send him a ‘text’ of support,” Dutch captain Mark van Bommel told the daily De Telegraaf.

“Arjen’s devastated. He has lost two Champions League finals and a World Cup final – it’s not easy to take. But he’s a player with a will of iron. He’s had several bad injuries in his career and got up each time,” said Van Bommel, who added that he was convinced that “Robben would get his revenge at the Euro”.

The Netherlands will play against Bulgaria on May 26, Slovakia on May 30 and Northern Ireland on June 2 ahead of the European championships which get underway on June 8.