Why Dirk Kuyt is as important to the Netherlands as Van Persie and Robben as he reaches 100 caps

As the Netherlands prepare for their decisive World Cup clash with Mexico, Louis van Gaal is ready to hand a 100th cap to an unlikely recipient.

Former Liverpool man Dirk Kuyt will be filling in at left-wing back for the Dutch as they face Mexico later today, and in the process reaching a century of caps after a decade in the national side. And there is almost something poetic about the once prolific Eredivisie striker reaching such a landmark by fulfilling a selfless role in van Gaal’s 5-3-2.

The Fenerbache forward-cum-winger earned his Dutch debut nearly ten years ago, after being called into Marco van Basten’s first squad for a game against Liechtenstein in September 2004 and this summer marks Kuyt’s fifth international tournament with Oranje, and the continuation of his gradual move away from a forward starting position.

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