Inter Milan and Netherlands defender Stefan de Vrij feels that it’s not the end of the world if he doesn’t always start matches.

The 32-year-old spoke to Dutch outlet Algemeen Dagblad, via FCInterNews. He stressed that in his view, “the team is what matters.”

De Vrij is hardly a fringe player at Inter.

The former Lazio defender made a total of 33 appearances for the Nerazzurri during the season just gone. These totalled around two thousand minutes on the pitch.

Meanwhile, de Vrij continues to have a role in the Netherlands squad. The fact that he is in Ronald Koeman’s squad for the Euros is a testament to the trust in him at the Oranje.

But at Inter, de Vrij is not the first-choice starter in defense. The sense is that in the Nerazzurri’s strongest possible lineup Francesco Acerbi starts ahead of him.

Meanwhile, for the Netherlands there are numerous high-quality options in de Vrij’s position.

That means that it is hardly a certainty that the Inter defender will get much playing time at the Euros. At the last World Cup, de Vrij did not play a single minute despite being in the Dutch squad.

Inter Defender Stefan De Vrij On Not Starting: “The Team Is What Matters”

“After the [World Cup] I received a lot of questions about my future with the national team,” de Vrij admitted.

“I didn’t play any minutes at that tournament.”

“But I’ll never say no to a call-up from the Dutch national team,” continued the Inter defender. “I consider it a huge honour.”

De Vrij reflected that “As you get older, you start to have a different perspective.”

“More focused on the big picture. That feeling of achieving something together.”

“I got that feeling at Inter last season as well,” the Dutchman said.

“When we reached the Champions League final, I wasn’t always playing. But that feeling from the team is still there.”

De Vrij made clear, “Don’t get me wrong, obviously I feel sorry if I don’t play.”

“And I’ll give everything to have an opportunity to play at a big tournament,” he continued.

“The most cohesive and well-prepared teams are the ones that win.”

“Even at Inter, you can feel that enormously,” de Vrij said.

“And what’s the point of sulking and getting angry if you’re not playing?” de Vrij added. “You have to make sure you’re ready when the time comes that you’re needed.”