Hague: Holland coach Dick Advocaat has recalled striker Ruud van Nistelrooy for the first of two Euro 2004 qualifying playoffs against Scotland in Glasgow on Saturday. Van Nistelrooy is unlikely to start against Berti Vogts’ side at Hampden Park as Advocaat still believes that the Manchester United star does not pair well with Barcelona’s Patrick Kluivert.
Van Nistelrooy’s inclusion had already been hanging by a thread after a display of petulance when he was substituted during September’s defeat in the Czech Republic. After that episode, Advocaat left him out of the squad for the final match in qualifying against Belarus.
However it appears that Advocaat is well aware of Nistelrooy’s value, and the United striker is likely to come off the bench at some point in the first leg against the Scots. Advocaat has few injury problems and is especially spoiled for choice up front where former Celtic striker Pierre van Hooijdonk — who has started well in his new career at Turkish club Fenerbahce — could feature alongside Bayern Munich’s Roy Makaay, or Kluivert.
In midfield Advocaat has been forced to recall AC Milan’s Clarence Seedorf due to an injury to Mark van Bommel.
Juventus’ Edgar Davids also returns following a one-game suspension.