SAO PAULO (AP) — Midfielder Nigel de Jong has recovered from a groin injury the Netherlands team feared would end his World Cup and will start Wednesday’s semifinal against Argentina.
Striker and captain Robin van Persie also has recovered from a stomach problem to take his place in the Dutch starting lineup alongside Arjen Robben in a potent striking partnership.
De Jong limped off early in the second-round game against Mexico and the team said he would likely be out for two to four weeks, but the 29-year-old AC Milan star has recovered quicker than anticipated.
For Argentina, Benfica midfielder Enzo Perez replaces Real Madrid winger Angel Di Maria, who was injured in Argentina’s 1-0 quarterfinal win over Belgium. Left back Marcos Rojo is back in the lineup after serving a one-match suspension.
Netherlands: Jasper Cillessen; Dirk Kuyt, Ron Vlaar, Stefan de Vrij, Bruno Martins Indi, Daley Blind; Nigel de Jong, Georginio Wijnaldum, Wesley Sneijder; Arjen Robben, Robin van Persie.
Argentina: Sergio Romero; Pablo Zabaleta, Martin Demichelis, Ezequiel Garay, Marcos Rojo; Lucas Biglia, Javier Mascherano, Enzo Perez; Ezequiel Lavezzi, Gonzalo Higuain, Lionel Messi.
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