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Sweden desperate for win against Netherlands

October 10, 2011

By Alex Camille

AMSTERDAM – Sweden takes on the Netherlands Tuesday in the final qualifying game of the European championships desperately needing a win to clinch its spot in the competition.

The Netherlands has already confirmed its participation in the tournament to be co-hosted by Ukraine and Poland.

The Swedes can’t book their tickets as yet.

Only a win would give them a place as the best second-placed side.

The Netherlands, which currently boasts a perfect qualifying record, thumped Sweden 4-1 in the reverse fixture in Oct. 2010.

Several key players are missing from the Netherlands roster.

First choice shot-stopper Maarten Stekelenburg is out injured along with Everton defender John Heitinga.

Midfielders Hedwiges Maduro, Wesley Sneijder and Ibrahim Affelay will all sit out with injuries joining Bayern Munich winger Arjen Robben on the sidelines.

Swansea goalkeeper Michel Vorm will most likely start in goal, while Jeffrey Bruma is a likely replacement for Heitinga at the back.

PSV Eindhoven ‘s Kevin Strootman is expected to keep his place in central midfield alongside skipper Mark Van Bommel.

Rafael van der Vaart will attempt to fill in for Sneijder while Arsenal captain Robin Van Persie is assured of a starting spot on the right.

Forward Zlatan Ibrahimovic will miss out for Sweden as he is serving a one-match suspension.

Six of Sweden’s players including PSV goalkeeper Andreas Isaksson, ply their trades in the Eredivisie.

Probable lineups:

Sweden:Isaksson, Lustig, Melberg, Majstorovic, Olsson, Larsson, R. Elm, Kallstrom, Wilhelmsson, Elmander and Toivonen

Netherlands: Vorm, Van der Wiel, Bruma, Mathijsen, Pieters, VanBommel, Strootman, Van Persie, Van der Vaart, Kuyt, Huntelaar

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