De Jong injured, misses rest of World Cup

Nigel de Jong
. Nigel de Jong. Source: Twitter/@2014WC_Brazil

Nigel de Jong will no longer be able to assist The Netherlands in their World Cup campaign due to a groin injury that will see him inactive on the bench for the next two to four weeks. On Twitter, De Jong says he is "devastated" at the news, but encourages his team to remain focused.

De Jong was forced to walk off the field nine minutes into the match against Mexico because of the injury. On Twitter, Dutch football association KNVB writes that De Jong will remain at Oranje for rehabilitation therapy. "Playing or not playing, injured or not... I'm staying with the guys. We came here with a mission and that hasn't changed. We have to keep believing in it. Only as a unit can we be successful" De Jong said.

The 29-year old has been on the starting line-up in all of Oranje's matches in Brazil, and also played in his position in South Africa in 2010. Louis van Gaal predicted De Jong's absence right after the last match. "This is a very big loss for us."

Leroy Fer may also not be available to Van Gaal. The midfielder has a hamstring injury, and it is not clear whether he will play the rest of this World Cup.

Robben is also disappointed at the loss of one of the team's strongest players, and calls it "a heavy blow." The vice-captain does still believe that The Netherlands stands a good chance to become world champion. "We have a chance. We are at the round of 16, and are going well. The possible absence of Nigel is a heavy loss, but our strength is that every player that comes onto the field from the bench, has a big influence on the game. Everyone is very sharp and can join in quickly. The trust in the team is very big."

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