Olympic concern for Zuiverloon

Dutch youngster will miss season openers

Zuiverloon: Beijing-bound

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Gianni Zuiverloon fears his participation at the Olympics may hinder his opportunities at West Brom.

The Dutch youngster joined the Baggies in a £3.2million deal from Heerenveen earlier in the summer, but is set to miss the start of the 2008/09 campaign as he represents his country in Beijing.

He is certain to be unavailable for his new club's season opener at Arsenal, while his involvement in the weeks after that are dependent on Holland's success in China.

Should the Oranje reach the final stages of the competition then his return to England will subsequently be pushed back.

He concedes that his absence could prove to be detrimental to his hopes of establishing himself at the Hawthorns, as other members of Tony Mowbray's squad will be given an opportunity to stake a claim for a regular starting spot.

Mixed feelings

"I think I will miss the first two games perhaps and the first one is against Arsenal which is one of the greatest games in the competition," said Zuiverloon.

"I have mixed feelings but the Olympics will be good and you can only play once there in your life. We hope we can go all the way in China. We are going for a medal as we have a very good team.

"Could it count against me if Albion start well? Yes, it might. They always say never change a winning team so if Albion make a good start then the manager doesn't need to change things.

"I will just have to work hard and show what I can do, I suppose if we won the gold medal it would help me.

"But, even so, if the other players are doing well then I won't be able to just come back into the team. It will be what the manager wants. I am an attacking defender and I want to play football."