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Oct 1, 2008

Van Persie angry at Sneijder Euro claims

Robin van Persie has accused Holland team-mate Wesley Sneijder of lacking "class" for making public their disagreement over a free-kick at Euro 2008.

Sneijder claimed on Tuesday he wanted to talk with the Arsenal striker about the set-piece taken, and missed, by Van Persie in Holland's quarter-final defeat to Russia.

The Real Madrid man insisted it had already been agreed that he would be the one to take it.

But Van Persie told AD Sportwereld: "When you want to invite an international colleague, you do that by phone and then you can speak.

"If Wesley had called me he would have been welcome. We could have had a fine talk. But I am amazed about the way Wesley handled it now.

"What is the use of such a talk if before it you tell the media and the audience what your problem is?

"I had expected more class and personality from him. Real personalities don't need a magazine or newspaper to make their point clear."

The Arsenal striker claimed Sneijder should have brought the matter up sooner, adding: "We could have talked about it in the hotel, after the match, if needed also during breakfast."

Van Persie also contested Sneijder's suggestion the Madrid man was Holland's appointed free-kick taker.

"During the reign of (former coach) Marco van Basten I was always the man who could take a free-kick," he added.

"At that point I had as much right as Wesley to take the free kick. You can check that with the national team coach."

Van Basten, however, has not backed up Van Persie's claim, insisting Sneijder was the designated free-kick taker during his tenure, although he added that the players had the freedom to make a final decision on set-pieces on the pitch.

"We had the agreement that Sneijder would take the free-kicks," said Van Basten, now coach of Ajax. "But Robin of course also has a very good free-kick.

"During a match they were allowed to make a deal. Now it is important that this matter is not made too big."

He added to Sportweek: "We must realise that we have two fantastic players, which makes Holland rich.

"It's now important that the two sit around the table. This situation is good for no one."

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