After not originally being in the Dutch national team squad for their pair of matches against Poland and Belgium, Bayern Munich’s Ryan Gravenberch has been called up to the squad for the match against Belgium, per @iMiaSanMia. Louis van Gaal has given the Bayern midfielder the callup because he’s already lost both Frenkie de Jong and Teun Koopmeiners since the international break has started.
Both de Jong and Koopmeiners came off with injuries during their 2-0 win over Poland in Warsaw, which will be two huge misses for van Gaal as his side look to close out the top spot in UEFA Nations League group A4. They already sit in top spot in the group with a total of 13 points, and Belgium, their next opponent, are three points behind them, having beaten Wales 2-1. The Netherlands have a goal difference of 7 to Belgium’s 4, so their matchup would only see the Netherlands drop to the second spot in the group if they lose by more than three goals.
For Gravenberch, this is a fantastic opportunity to get a look just a short while before van Gaal has to finalize his roster for the World Cup in Qatar. Fellow Bayern compatriot Matthijs de Ligt is also in the Dutch squad right now, though he was an unused sub in the win over Poland. Gravenberch missed out on the squad in June’s set of matches due to an ankle injury, but he was involved in the squad for their World Cup qualifiers last year as well as their Euro 2020 campaign.
If Gravenberch is to make an appearance in the match against Belgium, it would become his 11th appearance for the senior national squad. While his prospects for making the final roster for Qatar might be slim, this is a good chance for him, especially considering the fact that he’s not getting as many minutes as he would’ve hoped for at Bayern thus far under Julian Nagelsmann.