Netherlands head coach Dwight Lodeweges revealed in an interview with De Telegraaf (via Bild) that he is open to calling Arjen Robben back up to the Dutch national team. “We won’t shut the door on anyone, not even Robben!” Lodeweges said.
Robben retired from the Elftal in 2017 after 96 games and 37 goals. He is 36 now, but has just returned to the game for his hometown love FC Groningen in the Netherlands after a year-long “retirement” from Bayern Munich.
Lodeweges made it clear, though, that Robben will not be a shoe-in. “Everything stands or falls with performance, and he will have to earn it!” he said.
For fans of Bayern Munich, of course, that pragmatism is bittersweet. Germany coach Jogi Löw has insisted that he will not rescind his decision to end the international career of club icons Thomas Müller and Jerome Boateng, or Mats Hummels now back at Borussia Dortmund, despite the fact that Müller and Boateng just played one of their best ever seasons, and Hummels remains one of Germany’s best defenders — well ahead of his replacements on the national team.
For Lodeweges, the delay of the Euro “has created a new situation that everyone has to take a fresh look at. This is also true for Arjen Robben.“ Would that every coach saw it so!