Robin van Persie may not be fit to play for the Netherlands in Friday’s World Cup qualifier against Hungary, but the striker admits he feared a more serious scenario as he contemplated a potential broken toe.
Van Persie says he only has severe bruising to his affected foot, although his availability for the visit of Hungary to Amsterdam remains unconfirmed.
ESPNFC provides the quotes:
I got an enormous stamp on my toe and I really thought it had been broken, but luckily a scan showed it was not. I played on Sunday but the injury has not got better.
Paul Handler reported in the Manchester Evening News that Van Persie was forced to sit out of training ahead of Friday’s qualifier, such is the ongoing pain in the toe.
The Manchester United man suffered the “stamp” during the Red Devils’ trip to Shakhtar Donetsk. Van Persie completed the game despite the incident.
He then featured in the 2-1 win over Sunderland last weekend but uncharacteristically missed a golden chance to kill the game off, poking an unorthodox finish wide of the near post.
If the damage to his toe does prove to be mere bruising, Van Persie should not be in danger of missing any games for United, who do not play until Southampton’s visit to Old Trafford a week on Saturday.
He can also afford to rest during the Netherlands’ forthcoming qualifiers against Hungary and Turkey, knowing the country’s World Cup place is already booked.
In his absence, Netherlands do not have a household name to lead the line, unless Dirk Kuyt or Arjen Robben operate in a central role.
Jeremain Lens of Dynamo Kiev and Memphis Depay of PSV represent the nation’s other attacking options, so it will be a relief that little rides on the outcome of Friday’s match.