If PSV and FC Porto can agree a transfer fee, Steven Arnold Defour could be on the verge of joining the Eindhoven club after 3 years with the Portuguese giants. Defour’s agent Paul Stefani was originally quoted as saying “PSV are a big club and would certainly be of interest to Steve”. He is now saying that Defour has an agreement in principal with PSV but that it also depends on whether Porto allow him to leave.
Porto are certainly not lacking in midfield with players such as Hector Herrera, Josue and Juan Quintero already there and both Casemiro and Oliver Torres joining this summer on loan. Presumably as one of the more senior players at 26, Defour is likely to be on higher wages than most at the club so Porto will probably allow him to leave. PSV will bring him in to provide cover in midfield after Park Ji-Sung retired and Bryan Ruiz returned to Fulham. Also after having such a good World Cup, Georginio Wijnaldum could be a target for one or two European clubs.
Defour was born in Mechelen, Belgium and played youth football for KV Mechelen, before moving to KRC Genk in 2004. At the age of just 17 he became first choice for Genk in the 2005-06 campaign and finished it with 26 games and 1 goal. That season Genk failed to reach European football and this made Defour try and force a move to Ajax. Genk refused because the Dutch club had approached the player without the club’s permission, forcing Ajax to pull out. Defour threatened to leave over this but Ajax were no longer interested and Defour ended up signing for Standard Liege for a much reduced fee.
In his 2nd year at Standard he was named Captain at just 19 and won the Belgian Golden Shoe (Domestic Player of the Year) for helping his team to the domestic title for the first time in 25 years. During his time at Standard he was linked with quite a few big European clubs, including Manchester United after Defour received a letter from Sir Alex Ferguson wishing him well after Defour broke his foot in 2009.
In the summer of 2011 he signed for FC Porto for €6 million, signing a five-year contract. In his first year he made 37 appearances and scored 2 goals helping Porto to the league title. Last season he wasn’t as vital in Porto’s midfield as he had been in previous years, making only 16 appearances and scoring no goals, which is probably why he is linked with a move away.
Steven Defour is an accomplished central midfielder, who has good vision as well as being a tough tackler; he will add some bite and drive to the PSV midfield, which already contains the likes of Maher and Wijnaldum. If PSV can sign him and keep Wijnaldum then they will surely challenge for the Eredivisie title this year because they will have signed a player coming into his prime and already a proven winner.
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