Advocaat we must avoid another Amrabat saga

Netherlands head coach Dick Advocaat claims missing out on the talent of Feyenoord midfielder Sofyan Amrabat could have been easily avoided.

Amrabat, 21, joined the Eredivisie Champions from Utrecht in the off-season for €4million and has impressed in an unfamiliar right-back role for Giovanni van Bronkchorst's side.

However, upon being contacted by the KNVB over a potential call-up, Amrabat confirmed he's pledged his international allegiance to Morocco.

The Oranje boss admits the midfielder is well within his right to chose what country he represents but cites two major factors why the 2010 World Cup finalists missed out on the emerging talent.

"Sofyan Amrabat has made his decision and we did everything we could to convince him to play for the Dutch national team," he said during the squad announcement press conference.

"We spoke to him and to his agents. Sofyan Amrabat is a player who is convinced of his own qualities. He is the one that must make the decision not me and he chose for Morocco.

"Maybe if the Dutch national team had qualified for a major tournament it may have resulted in a different outcome," the former Sunderland boss added. "Morocco have a chance to qualify for the World Cup in Russia next summer.

"I believe that we must monitor players earlier. We have to get in touch with potential players sooner to influence their decision. But you also have to factor in that a decision a player makes in only valid when he makes his debut in the first team of that country."

Netherlands squad:

Keepers: Jasper Cillessen (Barcelona), Michel Form (Tottenham Hotspur), Jeroen Zoet (PSV)

Defenders: Nathan Aké (AFC Bournemouth), Virgil van Dijk (Southampton), Wesley Hoedt (Southampton), Matthijs de Ligt (Ajax) Karim Rekik (Hertha BSC), Kenny Tete (Olympique Lyon), Joël Veltman (Ajax)

Midfielders: Donny van de Beek (Ajax), Daley Blind (Manchester United), Marco van Ginkel (PSV), Davy Pröpper (Brighton & Hove Albion), Wesley Sneijder (OGC Nice), Kevin Strootman (AS Roma), Tonny Vilhena (Feyenoord), Georginio Wijnaldum (Liverpool)

Attackers: Ryan Babel (Besiktas), Steven Berghuis (Feyenoord), Memphis Depay (Olympique Lyon), Bas Dost (Sporting Lisbon), Vincent Janssen (Fenerbahçe), Jürgen Locadia (PSV), Quincy Promes (Spartak Moscow)

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