Netherlands captain Arjen Robben has announced his retirement from international football after his side missed out on qualification for the 2018 World Cup on Tuesday night.
Despite a double from Robben, the second a 20-yard stunner, handing the Netherlands a 2-0 win over Sweden, the result still fell some way short of the seven goal margin of victory they needed to leapfrog the Swedes into a playoff place.
That means the Oranje have now missed out on consecutive major tournaments, having also failed to qualify for last year’s European Championships in France.
Almost immediately after full time, reports began to emerge that the Oranje would suffer a second blow of the night with the news that Robben was set to step back from international football.
The Bayern Munich midfielder made his international debut in a friendly against Portugal in 2003, and was part of the Netherlands side that lost 1-0 to Spain in the final of the 2010 World Cup, before being handed the captaincy of the national side in 2015.
Altogether, Robben has made 96 appearances for the national side, the ninth-highest in Dutch history, scoring 37 goals in that time, putting him fourth on Holland’s all-time top scorers list.