Van Bommel defends De Jong
Mark van Bommel has jumped to the defence of Manchester City's under-fire midfielder Nigel de Jong.
Last Updated: 05/10/10 2:22pm
Bayern Munich veteran Mark van Bommel has jumped to the defence of Manchester City's under-fire midfielder Nigel de Jong.
The Holland international has been on the end of criticism in recent days after he broke an opponent's leg for the second time this year.
De Jong broke Newcastle's Hatem Ben Arfa's tibia and fibula in Sunday's Premier League clash after injuring USA's Stuart Holden in an international in March.
The 25-year-old former Hamburg and Ajax man has been dropped by Holland boss Bert van Marwijk for their upcoming qualifiers against Moldova and Sweden.
Despite Van Marwijk's actions, Van Bommel is standing by his international colleague and believes those calling him a 'criminal' are shouts that are wide of the mark.
"Nigel is and remains one of us," he told AD Sportwereld.
"We find this all very frustrating. It's very unfortunate that he has broken the leg of an opponent twice in six months.
"But I know Nigel as a sweet guy. He doesn't want to injure anyone but wants to win every match. That is his strength.
"Thanks to Nigel we reached the final of the World Cup. And now I hear people calling him a criminal. What a nonsense."