Jun 11, 2023 at 8:18 PMUpdate: an hour ago
Erwin van de Looi still can hardly believe that Jeremie has thanked Frimpong for the European Championship with the Dutch Juniors. The national coach thought in vain that the right back would change his mind, especially given the names that (possibly) do participate in the final tournament.
Frimpong had been told that he had dropped out for the ‘big’ Orange, after which he was called by Junior National coach Van de Looi. He wanted to discuss the program towards the European Championship with the English-speaking defender of Bayer Leverkusen. “But then he said he didn’t want to come,” says Van de Looi.
The 22-year-old Bundesliga sensation had hoped for an invitation to the Orange, with which he had also been to the World Cup in Qatar in December. “I told him that he was in the emotion and had to think about it for a while. You usually don’t make the best decisions in the emotion,” says Van de Looi.
After that, Van de Looi no longer spoke to the Dutch-Ghanaian right back, so it is a big question mark whether he will ever play for the Dutch team again. Because he did not make his debut during the World Cup, an international career with Ghana or even England (where he grew up) beckons.
Van de Looi is convinced that in his heart Frimpong prefers to play for the Netherlands, but emphasizes that the matter is not in his hands now. “That is up to other people within the KNVB. It is up to the national coach and Nigel de Jong (director of top football at the KNVB, ed.), who also called him.”
Van de Looi points to Napoli sensation: ‘Frimpong would not have been out of place there’
On Sunday, Van de Looi welcomed the players in Zeist who will play at the European Championship, which will start for Van de Looi’s team on June 21 against Belgium’s peers. The 23-man selection also includes Brian Brobbey and Bart Verbruggen, who, like Frimpong, dropped out for the Orange squad.
“In my opening speech I just said to the players that there are a number of players in the group who I think would not be out of place in the selection of the Dutch national team. But the fact that they are not among them does not mean that you cannot you are a good player. You can do both.”
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Van de Looi points to Georgia, which will meet the Dutch Juniors in the group stage. The provisional list of the home country includes the name of Napoli sensation Khvicha Kvaratskhelia, who is to become the face of the European Championship in Georgia and Romania.
Van de Looi also sees players with, among others, Charles De Ketelaere (AC Milan) and Johan Bakayoko (PSV) with the Belgians who have already won international matches. “So Frimpong wouldn’t have been out of place either. Unfortunately, he saw it differently and I don’t agree with that.”
EK program Young Orange
Group stage:June 21: Young Orange-Young Belgium (6 p.m.) June 24: Young Orange-Young Portugal (6 p.m.) June 27: Young Orange-Young Georgia (6 p.m.)