Sven Botman pulls out of Holland U21 squad to ‘exclusively focus’ on winning his place back at Newcastle… with Eddie Howe admitting Dan Burn ‘gets the nod at the moment’ as Fabian Schar’s centre-back partner
- Holland U21 face friendlies against Belgium and Romania in international break
- Sven Botman was initially called up to squad before withdrawing on Tuesday
- Botman was an unused substitute in Newcastle’s draw with Bournemouth
- Eddie Howe admitted recently Dan Burn is ahead of 22-year-old in pecking order
Sven Botman has pulled out of Holland’s U21 squad to reportedly focus on reclaiming a starting spot at Newcastle.
Erwin van de Looi’s squad face friendly matches against Belgium and Romania this week, with Botman initially being called up after being overlooked for the senior side by Louis van Gaal.
But the 22-year-old centre-back withdrew from the U21 squad on Tuesday morning, with the Newcastle Echo claiming he informed the Dutch FA of his decision because he wants to ‘exclusively’ focus on his club.
Sven Botman has pulled out of Holland’s U21 squad to reportedly focus on reclaiming a starting spot at Newcastle
Burn has been left out of three Premier League matches following his £35m summer move
The centre-back has been left out for three Premier League already this season, most recently Saturday’s 1-1 draw with Bournemouth, and is now focusing on winning his place back for the match at Fulham after the international break.
Magpies boss Eddie Howe admitted recently Botman – who joined Newcastle in a £35million deal from Lille in the summer – is currently behind Dan Burn in the pecking order and will continue to partner Fabian Schar.
Howe said: ‘We managed their load in the week where we had three games, so that was bringing Dan back.
‘I just feel his leadership skills and his experience, we need that in our team at the moment.
Eddie Howe (left) admittedly recent Dan Burn (right) is above Botman in the pecking order
Sven is going to be an outstanding player and will play many, many games for this club. We love him to bits, but Dan just gets the nod at the moment.’
Botman has made seven appearances for Holland at U21 level, and was called up to the senior squad for the first time in November 2020.
Botman revealed last month he spoke with Howe after playing just one minute as a substitute in their opening game of the season against Nottingham Forest.
He told Chronicle Live: ‘I spoke with the gaffer about it. He had his reasons and I had to accept it.
‘And in the end, everything happens for a reason. At the moment I am happy and I am playing. So I hope it will continue like this and I will try to help the team as much as possible.’
Fabian Schar is a key player in Howe’s side despite their mixed start to the new season
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