THE HAGUE, Netherlands, May 23 – Netherlands coach Bert van Marwijk has strongly criticised the “scandalous” treatment in Germany of Arjen Robben, during the Oranje’s friendly match against his club Bayern Munich.
“It’s scandalous the way in which Arjen was treated on Tuesday in Munich. Arjen was really down about it but I hope that he will emerge stronger from the experience,” van Marwijk told the Dutch news agency ANP.
Robben, who missed an extra-time penalty in the Champions League final against Chelsea on Saturday when the score was 1-1, was repeatedly booed by a section of the 33,000 fans who came to see the match.
Dutch team-mates, including former Bayern star Mark van Bommel, agreed that Robben was unfairly treated.
“It’s shocking what happened to Arjen. And no club officials seemed to want to do anything about it. If I were him, I be asking myself whether I still want to play for the club,” said van Bommel.
Dutch playmaker Wesley Sneijder even told ANP that Robben “could join Inter Milan whenever he likes”. Robben, however, only recently extended his contract at Bayern until 2015.
Bayern later apologised for Robben’s treatment, saying it viewed the fans’ behaviour “with astonishment, irritation and disappointment”.
“No one has the right to whistle at our players,” said club president Karl-Heinz Rummenigge.
Robben, like his Bayern team-mates and the fans, was “disappointed and very affected by the unfortunate and undeserved Champions League defeat against Chelsea”, Rummenigge added.
The Germany legend added that Bayern fans need to know how to pick up a player when he is down and pointed out that many supporters had contacted him to apologise on behalf of those who booed the player.
The Bavarian club said it hoped Bayern had a successful Euro 2012 with the Netherlands and they would be delighted to welcome him back for the next Bundesliga season in July.