Amsterdam - Dutch midfielder Stijn Schaars has given up his
bid to be fit in time to play at the World Cup as a persistent knee complaint
hinders his progress, Dutch media reported on Tuesday.
The PSV Eindhoven player, who was part of the 2010 World Cup
and Euro 2012 squads, was left out of a group of 20 home-based players that
national team coach Louis van Gaal named on Monday for the first of several
pre-tournament training camps.
"I'm thinking about the long term future," the
30-year-old told reporters. "The most important is just to get fit and
"Of course, I wanted to go to the World Cup but I would
not have been able to give of my best and there was always the chance my body
would let me down.
"I'm rather focusing now on the new season and hope to
be fit again by June 25 so that I can begin the pre-season preparations."
Schaars, who has 23 caps, was expected to be among the
23-man squad for the tournament in Brazil.The Dutch meet holders Spain in their opening
game at the World Cup in a repeat of the 2010 final on June 13 in Salvador.
They will also play against Australia and Chile in their opening round group.
For the latest on
national news, politics, sport, entertainment and more follow us on Twitter and
like our Facebook page.