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Van Persie again left out of Netherlands squad

Robin van Persie's Netherlands career appears all but over after national team coach Danny Blind left him out of his provisional squad for the upcoming international friendlies against France and England as he looks to build a team for the 2018 World Cup.

The Fenerbahce striker is Oranje's all-time leading goalscorer with 50 goals in 101 appearances and is one of only eight players with more than 100 caps.

However, Blind now prefers the likes of Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, Luuk de Jong and the uncapped Vincent Janssen, having already snubbed Van Persie for the 3-2 win over Wales back in November 2015.

Other notable absentees include Maarten Stekelenburg, Gregory van der Wiel, Bruno Martins Indi, Stefan de Vrij (injured) and Nigel de Jong.

Blind's 28-man squad includes high-profile names such as Arjen Robben and Wesley Sneijder, while Manchester United duo Memphis Depay and Daley Blind have both made the cut, too.

Ajax left-back Mitchell Dijks and Utrecht defender Timo Letschert, as well as the aforementioned Janssen, are the three new names in the squad, while PSV attacker Jurgen Locadia could also make his debut.

Jetro Willems makes his comeback after a lengthy spell on the sidelines due to a knee injury, with Ron Vlaar also returning to the fold.

Netherlands host France on March 25, before taking on England four days later.

Squad in full:

Goalkeepers: Jasper Cillessen (Ajax), Kenneth Vermeer (Feyenoord), Jeroen Zoet (PSV). 

Defenders: Virgil van Dijk (Southampton), Daley Blind (Manchester United), Mitchell Dijks (Ajax), Jeffrey Bruma (PSV), Daryl Janmaat (Newcastle), Timo Letschert (Utrecht), Erik Pieters (Stoke City), Jetro Willems (PSV), Joel Veltman (Ajax), Ron Vlaar (AZ). 

Midfielders: Ibrahim Afellay (Stoke City), Riechedly Bazoer (Ajax), Jordy Clasie (Southampton), Davy Klaassen (Ajax), Davy Propper (PSV), Wesley Sneijder (Galatasaray), Georginio Wijnaldum (Newcastle). 

Attackers: Memphis Depay (Manchester United), Klaas-Jan Huntelaar (Schalke), Vincent Janssen (AZ), Luuk de Jong (PSV), Jurgen Locadia (PSV), Luciano Narsingh (PSV), Quincy Promes (Spartak Moscow), Arjen Robben (Bayern Munich).