Updates from Wednesday, Mar. 5
Robin van Persie is in the Netherlands squad to face France today (via Dutch Football):
After being struck with illness, Robin van Persie is a doubt for Wednesday's international friendly against France and potentially Manchester United's weekend trip to West Brom.
Richard Jolly of ESPNFC.com reports that van Persie failed to train on Tuesday, but he adds that Netherlands boss Louis van Gaal is unconcerned by the news of van Persie's and Arjen Robben's potential absences, as their places at the 2014 World Cup are cemented: "We need to see how it goes, but we won’t take any risks with them. It is not a problem if they do not play as they are not players I need to test ahead of the World Cup. Robben and Van Persie will be at the World Cup regardless."
Van Persie has struggled with a string of groin and hamstring strains this season, but it's unlikely that this most recent issue will have as significant an impact on the striker's involvement at Manchester United.
David Moyes' side face a trip to The Hawthorns this Saturday (March 8), and the Red Devils will be hopeful of seeing their forward return to full fitness ahead of the West Brom examination.
Netherlands' meeting with Les Bleus is one of Europe's highlight fixtures during this international break, with both nations hoping to figure in the reckoning for this summer's World Cup.
If van Persie were to miss the Paris clash, Schalke's Klaas-Jan Huntelaar stands as the most likely alternative to fill in during his absence should van Gaal insist on leading with a central striker in his formation.
OptaJose shows exactly how vital van Persie was to Netherlands' World Cup qualification campaign:
Elsewhere, United will have grown used to lining up without their attacking focus, who has started just 15 of a possible 28 Premier League games this term, per Transfermarkt.
Wayne Rooney, Danny Welbeck or Javier Hernandez could be utilised as deputies in Moyes' strike force, as has been the case for roughly half the campaign.
It's but another obstacle in what has been a difficult path for van Persie to tread of late, with the Oranje being the latest victims of their hitman's staggered health.
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