Robin van Persie questionable for semifinal with stomach ailment

Brooks Peck
Dirty Tackle
(Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)


(Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

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Netherlands striker Robin van Persie could miss Wednesday's World Cup semifinal against Argentina after manager Louis van Gaal revealed that he is suffering from a stomach problem. Van Persie trained separately from his teammates on Tuesday and Van Gaal says he won't decide on the striker's place in the team until matchday.

From the Press Association:

"He has a stomach problem, an intestinal problem. I don't know (if he will play)," Van Gaal told a press conference.

"I will decide (on Wednesday).

"Van Persie is our captain so he is very important to us.

"In principle my captain always plays, but he has to be fit."

Argentina will be without star winger Angel Di Maria due to a thigh injury, but if Van Persie is unable to play, it might not be the worst thing in the world for the Netherlands. Despite the Dutch reaching the final in 2010, Van Persie has never scored in the World Cup knockout stage (going back to the Netherlands' 1-0 loss to Portugal in the 2006 round of 16).

Van Persie scored three goals in the first two matches of this tournament before missing the 2-0 win over Chile to close out the group stage due to yellow card accumulation. He was then quiet in the Netherlands' 2-1 win over Mexico, getting subbed off before the team's late comeback. He played the full 120 minutes in the scoreless quarterfinal against Costa Rica before converting his penalty in the ensuing shootout.

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