Frenkie de Jong ruled out of Euro 2024 with ankle injury in major blow to Netherlands

Frenkie de Jong ruled out of Euro 2024 with ankle injury in major blow to Netherlands

Frenkie de Jong has been ruled out of Euro 2024 with an ankle injury.

The Barcelona midfielder was in a race to return to fitness in time for the tournament in Germany, having been kept on the sidelines by the ankle problem since a defeat to Real Madrid on April 21.

There was a positive update for the Netherlands when De Jong participated in training over the weekend, though he was kept away from any contact. Dutch boss Ronald Koeman suggested he would still take De Jong to the Euros even if he missed the first two group-stage matches, but admitted he would have to reconsider if the 27-year-old was unlikely to return before the knockout stages.

De Jong was not involved in his country’s 4-0 friendly win over Iceland on Monday night, and instead revealed that he will play no part in the upcoming tournament.

He posted on social media: “I'm sad and disappointed that I won’t make it to the [Euros].

“We’ve been doing a lot of [work] the last few weeks, but my ankle needs more time unfortunately. It’s a dream and greatest honour to represent our country in a final tournament. Wearing the orange shirt, singing the Wilhelmus and feeling the support of the entire country.

“But now I will, like the entire orange legion, cheer for our team from the sidelines. Let's go boys."

The Netherlands begin their tournament on June 16 against Poland, before taking on France and Austria. The top two teams in each group will progress to the last-16, and will be joined by the four best third-placed sides.

The Dutch side have not made it beyond the last-16 of a European Championship since 2008, while their only major tournament success came at the Euros 36 years ago.

That was the last time Germany hosted the tournament and while the Netherlands will hope that can prove a good omen, De Jong’s absence is a significant blow.

"Frenkie de Jong not going to the Euros is painful,” Memphis Depay said.

“For the team, for the manager and mostly for Frenkie. He worked very hard to be there, but he still has a long career ahead of him and he needs to be wise."