Ronald Koeman has explained why Jeremie Frimpong is not in his Netherlands squad and discussed Ryan Gravenberch’s decision to pull out of the U21 squad.

Frimpong has been in excellent form for Bayer Leverkusen so far this season and his absence from the Netherlands squad was met once again with surprise.

At his press conference on Monday, Koeman was asked why Frimpong was not there, and he confirmed it was because the right-back turned down an invitation to the U21 squad for the summer’s European Championships.

Koeman said, “Nigel de Jong (director of top football) has now spoken to Frimpong on behalf of the KNVB. We are of course not happy with players who cancel at the Dutch Juniors. We think you should always be available. Nigel has spoken to him about that. He still wants to play for the Dutch national team, but we have said within the KNVB that he is not available for this period in September.

“You can see that as a kind of punishment. I think there should be an obligation for players that you play for which representative team. If you think you can cancel at the Dutch Juniors and want to be with the Dutch national team again the day after tomorrow, yes, that is not the way we think about internationals. He understands that.”

Koeman also mentioned Ryan Gravenberch, who has turned down a call-up to the U21 squad to concentrate on Liverpool, “It is the same with Gravenberch. We are not happy with that. I understand it all, but you can also take a step through good performances at the Dutch Juniors.”

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