Netherlands play host to Colombia in a mouthwatering international friendly in the Amsterdam Arena on Tuesday.

  • By Michael Bell
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strootman efAfter the disappointing 2-2 draw on Saturday against Japan, Netherlands face an even tougher task when they come up against Falcao’s Colombia.

The South American’s are one of the top seeds for next summer’s World Cup, and a depleted Netherlands will find it difficult to break down Jose Pekerman’s side.

Without Robin van Persie, Wesley Sneijder, and Dirk Kuyt, Netherlands struggled against Japan, and have been hit by further injuries since the 2-2 draw. Winger Arjen Robben, Nigel de Jong, Bruno Martins Indi, and Jetro Willems have all dropped out since Saturday’s game, with Patrick van Aanholt called in as cover.

Ajax youngster Joel Veltman is tipped to make his debut at the centre of the defence, and Stijn Schaars should replace the injured Nigel de Jong in the midfield.

Colombia were excellent in their World Cup qualifying group, finishing 2nd behind Argentina, and with Falcao up front they are capable of beating any side. How the untried Vlaar, and Veltman cope against the Monaco striker will determine the end result.

Other than Falcao, winger James Rodriguez, midfielder Fredy Guarin, and striker Jackson Martinez are all Colombian stars plying their trade in Europe.

Possible Netherlands line up: Cillessen, Van der Wiel, Blind, Veltman, Vlaar, Schaars, Van der Vaart, Strootman, Lens, Depay, Siem De Jong

The first ever meeting of Netherlands and Colombia should be a competitive tie, but it must be acknowledged that it will not be the strongest Dutch side that will take to the field. Colombia have only been beaten twice in their last 16 matches, while the home side have their own impressive record to maintain.

Netherlands are unbeaten so far this calender year, and Van Gaal will be hoping that his side can survive their final hurdle, proving they are real contenders for next summers World Cup.

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