Super Mario escapes Dutch cull
Wigan Athletic skipper Mario Melchiot made the 23 man squad for the Netherlands Euro 2008 campaign after it was culled from 30.
Melchiot missed the last two games of the season through injury but he`s managed to convince Dutch coach Marco van Basten that he is 100% fit and raring to go.
There are seven English Premier League players featuring in the squad with Manchester United keeper Edwin van der Sar likely to feature as The Oranje number one choice.
Aston Villa`s Wilfred Bouma, along with Latics Mario Melchiot and André Ooijer from Blackburn Rovers all feature in defence for The Netherlands.
In the striking department, Liverpool`s Dirk Kuyt and Ryan Babel and Arsenal`s Robin van Persie are also still in the squad and expected to feature in the Finals in Austria/Switzerland which kick-off on June 7.
Sadly former Latics midfield player Denny Landzaat didn`t make the final 23 and misses out after leaving Latics for Dutch club Feyenoord last January.
The full Dutch squad is:
Edwin Van der Sar (Manchester United)
Maarten Stekelenburg (Ajax)
Henk Timmer (Feyenoord)
Ibrahim Afellay (PSV Eindhoven)
Wilfred Bouma (Aston Villa)
Tim De Cler (Feyenoord)
Johnny Heitinga (Ajax)
Joris Mathijsen (Hamburg)
Mario Melchiot (Wigan)
Andre Ooijer (Blackburn)
Giovanni van Bronckhorst (Feyenoord)
Orlando Engelaar (Twente)
Nigel de Jong (SV Hamburg)
Arjen Robben (Real Madrid)
Wesley Sneijder (Real Madrid)
Rafael van der Vaart (Hamburg)
Demy de Zeeuw (AZ Alkmaar)
Ryan Babel (Liverpool)
Klaas Jan Huntelaar (Ajax)
Dirk Kuyt (Liverpool)
Ruud van Nistelrooy (Real Madrid)
Robin van Persie (Arsenal)
Jan Vennegoor of Hesselink (Celtic)
In the absence of any of the home countries I will be wearing my Oranje top this summer urging on the Dutch to become Euro champs
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