De Jong - This is our time
Nigel de Jong believes the time is right for the current crop of Dutch players to claim World Cup glory.
Last Updated: 07/07/10 3:40pm
Holland midfielder Nigel de Jong believes the time is right for the current crop of Dutch players to claim World Cup glory.
The Oranje reached the final in South Africa following their 3-2 win over Uruguay on Tuesday, and they will now play either Spain or Germany at Soccer City on Sunday.
Holland have never won the competition but have twice been beaten finalists - in 1974 and 1978.
De Jong insists past failures are not a burden on the current squad, and says the players are just focused on the here and now.
"That is right (having never won), but it is not a problem," he said. "The energy we get from it is positive, not negative.
"Those teams in the past put Holland on the map. But that was 32 years ago. This is a new generation.
"We cannot go into the game with any memories of the past.
"This is our squad and our time. With all due respect, they had theirs."
De Jong, 25, was forced to sit out the semi-final victory over Uruguay after being ruled out through suspension.
Goals from Giovanni van Bronckhorst, Wesley Sneijder and Arjen Robben secured Holland's safe passage, but Manchester City midfielder De Jong admits it was torture from the sidelines.
"That was the hardest game I have ever been involved in," he added.
"I am more tired than all the other guys in the dressing room put together.
"I was so nervous. I was missing the semi-final of the World Cup because I had picked up two yellow cards.
"It just made it a very stressful night.
"But the guys did a terrific job. They made it possible for me to play in a World Cup final."