Soccer

Van Persie out of Netherlands friendlies

AMSTERDAM (AP) — Manchester United striker Robin van Persie has pulled out of the Netherlands squad for friendlies against Japan and Colombia, complaining of toe and groin injuries.

Van Persie headed the winner in United's 1-0 win over English league leader Arsenal on Sunday. Feyenoord midfielder Jordy Clasie also pulled out of the Dutch squad on Tuesday with a bruised foot. Coach Louis van Gaal called up Norwich midfielder Leroy Fer and Davy Proepper of Eredivisie leader Vitesse Arnhem as replacements. It is 22-year-old Proepper's first international call-up.

Earlier, Dirk Kuyt pulled out injured and was replaced by Ajax captain Siem de Jong. The Netherlands plays Japan on Saturday in Genk, Belgium, and Colombia the following Tuesday in Amsterdam. All three teams have already qualified for next year's World Cup in Brazil.

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