Robben fit to face France
Van Basten confirms winger's rapid recovery
By Rob Parrish. Last Updated: June 12, 2008 12:51pm
Robben: Fit again
Holland winger Arjen Robben is fit to face France on Friday after making a rapid recovery from his groin injury.
The Real Madrid star was initially expected to miss all of the group stages after suffering the injury prior to the Dutch's stunning 3-0 success over World Cup holders Italy.
He was then pencilled in to return in the final Group C clash against Romania next Tuesday, but coach Marco van Basten has now confirmed that Robben is in contention to tackle Raymond Domenech's side in Berne.
Robben played a full part in training with his team-mates on Thursday and Van Basten said: "He is not only ready for Romania but also ready for France. He is fit."
And team-mate Wesley Sneijder believes that Holland's new-found unity can help them achieve Euro 2008 glory.
Previous Dutch campaigns at major tournaments have been hit by reports of divisions within the squad, but Sneijder insists that is not the case with the latest group.
Coffee after dinner
He told De Telegraaf: "This is my third tournament. Never before have I seen such a good group.
"Also in how we deal with each other. We can talk about football very well. Maybe that's why we have the now-or-never feeling.
"We have the possibility to win Euro 2008 and we all feel that we can do it. In Portugal in 2004, we came far too, but we won just one game. The feeling now is totally different.
"The group that drinks a cup of coffee after dinner is growing, the coaches are there too. We speak about football then.
"More guys than ever before dare to speak their mind now. In the past years, that was different.
"When we had a day off in a tournament, a few guys used to go this way and another group went somewhere else. Now all 23 people eat together. I have never encountered that before."