Category Archives: TRANSFERS

Liverpool winger is off to Utrecht

After losing Jens Toornstra today to Feyenoord, FC Utrecht coach Rob Alflen is all set to add Liverpool’s Swedish winger Kristoffer Peterson to his attacking options on a season long loan deal writes Will Burns.

The 19-year-old arrived at Liverpool from Swedish side, Savedalens IF in January 2011 and has been a main fixture in the side’s Under-18 academy side until he spent a month period on loan at Tranmere Rovers last season.

The Swedish starlet is an exciting player who can play on the left or right wing, and also up front and he featured heavily in Liverpool’s pre-season tour which he impressed and scored goals in games against Brondby and Preston North End.

Speaking about the young Swede, Utrecht coach Alflen talking to Algemeen Dagblad said: “We have been watching him and I’ve seen him work as a forward and on the flanks. He is threatening, has power and he is definitely a good for our team.”

Peterson has represented his country at various youth levels and is a regular in starter in the Under-21 team and a deal with Utrecht should be announced imminently as the player is understood to be undertaking a medical this afternoon.


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Feyenoord confirm signing of Jens Toornstra

Feyenoord have confirmed the signing of 25-year-old FC Utrecht attacking midfielder Jens Toornstra on a four year deal for an undisclosed fee writes Will Burns.

Martin van Geel with new signing Jens Toornstra – photo courtesy of

It was announced by many Dutch press outlets last week that a fee had been agreed and Toornstra was present at yesterday’s Feyenoord-Utrecht match at De Kuip where he saw his old side defeat his new side by two goals to one.

Speaking to, Toornstra said: “I have supported Feyenoord since I was a child and the move comes at a good time for me, I was ready for a step up.

“My father was a big Feyenoord supporter and took me to the stadium many times. My first game there was against Ajax, which was unfortunately lost but I was impressed with the stadium and the supporters. Since then I have had a soft spot for Feyenoord. There is nothing more beautiful than the supporters that get behind you. I can now experience this, I’m really excited.”

Toornstra began his career at a youth player at amateur side Alphense Boys before being spotted by scouts of ADO Den Haag. He joined ADO in 2009 and made 104 appearances and scoring 11 times for the club before signing for Utrecht in the winter transfer window of 2013. For Utrecht, he netted 19 goals in 48 games.

Toornstra will be a great addition for Feyenoord’s attacking options however, the main story of the transfer window will be that Martin van Geel and Fred Rutten are yet to replace Graziano Pellè – a striker is needed before the window slams shut on Monday 1st September.


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Southampton to look to Feyenoord’s Clasie as Schneiderlin replacement

De Telegraaf reported this morning that Southampton’s Dutch manager Ronald Koeman could look to recruit Feyenoord captain Jordy Clasie to as a replacement for midfielder Morgan Schneiderlin if a bid comes in for the Frenchman writes Will Burns.

Koeman of course has worked with Clasie before at Feyenoord and last season named the midfielder as club captain after striker Graziano Pelle was stripped of the armband for disciplinary problems. It is understood that Feyenoord will accept an offer of over €12m for the 23-year-old and the player could be moved on before the end of the European Transfer Window next Monday, 1st September.

Schneiderlin has been with the Premier League side for six years but he has publicity stated he would like to leave after being linked with moves to Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal by the British press. The 24-year-old delivered a Twitter outburst after the club’s hierarchy insisted Schneiderlin was not for sale – see below.

If Schneiderlin does get his own way and leaves the South Coast club, Clasie would be the perfect alternative. Great defensively as well as going forward, Clasie shields the back four as simultaneously beginning and orchestrating the forward play with his decisive passing.

Since he was 18-years-old, Clasie has been playing first time football in the Eredivisie, first loaned to Excelsior Rotterdam before in the midfield of Feyenoord.

Portuguese giants FC Porto have been linked all summer with a move for the player however it would seem if Southampton were interested, Clasie would jump to the chance of playing in the Premier League under former manager Koeman.


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Roma should cash in on Kevin Strootman now before his inevitable move to Man Utd

Louis van Gaal is a keen admirer of Kevin Strootman and would love to bring his countryman to Old Trafford to strengthen a midfield crying out for reinforcements. David Moyes did make this a priority last summer when he first arrived as manager. He attempted to make a swoop for Cesc Fabregas, who was at the time with Barcelona, as well as Marrouane Fellaini, who he had managed at Everton. The Scot was only able to land Fellaini during a transfer window that became a debacle for United. In truth, neither of Moyes’s primary targets are the type of players the team needs writes Joe Maloney.

Ander Herrera has been impressive since leaving Athletic Bilbao for £29 million. He adds comfort in possession that we have become accustomed to seeing from a classy Spanish midfielder. He evidently has the confidence in playing the ball forward which will enable plenty of chances for the likes of Robin van Persie and Wayne Rooney.

Michael Carrick, now the oldest player at the club, is out for a number of months after sustaining a knee injury. Had the England midfielder been fit, evidence illustrated last season indicated his best days were perhaps behind him. Tom Cleverley has not developed into the promising player he once appeared and the same applies for Anderson. Darren Fletcher has impressed during pre-season, but has not featured in over 20 league appearances during a season, since 2010-2011. That leaves the disappointing Fellaini. The Belgian midfielder was probably the least natural fit of a Manchester United player brought to the club in recent memory. Employed in a holding role, he does not possess the movement and struggles to maintain possession. Often, Fellaini is found wanting, in what has been billed as his best position and usually finds the game passes him by. This is a midfield that has been starved of top-class replacements since the departures of Owen Hargreaves and Paul Scholes. It was the reason behind Scholes’s return to the side after his original retirement.

Although Strootman is recovering from a serious knee injury, sustained last March, Van Gaal is a keen admirer of the midfielder and would like to bring him in. David Moyes discarded the opportunity to sign the Roma player. He also called off the chance to sign Thiago from Barcelona before he joined Bayern Munich. Strootman has only recently started light training and still facing a lengthy spell on the sidelines. However, with United’s essential need in midfield, speculation has risen that a bid could be submitted before the transfer window shuts at the end of the month. Roma coach Rudi Garcia was quick to play down this rumour after Roma’s 3-2 defeat to LVG’s team during the club’s tour of America.

“Maybe after a three-digit offer, then we will sit down and think about it” said Garcia.

Last season the midfield was never more exploited, in both matches, against eventual champions Manchester City. City’s dynamic players Yaya Toure and Fernandinho were far too much for the likes of Michael Carrick, Tom Cleverley or Fellaini to handle. Any top-side midfield in the modern game expresses high amounts of speed, power, urgency, movement and ball retention. None of those components you could label at the Red’s centre midfield in the last campaign. Some could say it isn’t something they have displayed for a number of years since losing the likes of Paul Scholes and Owen Hargreaves. Strootman portrays great strength, drive and stability that would match well to the side’s capabilities.


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Hakim Ziyech’s transfer saga is over

One of the biggest transfer sagas of the summer has been settled as Heerenveen playmaker Hakim Ziyech has signed for FC Twente on a four year contract for a fee reported to be around €4 million writes Will Burns.

Alfred Schreuder and Hakim Ziyech – image courtesy of

The talented 21-year old, scored nine goals in 33 league appearances for Heerenveen under Marco van Basten last season, and he has made a great start to this campaign, with two goals in as many games.

With only a year left on his current deal at the Frisian club, Heerenveen felt it was the best time to cash in on Ziyech, although he is considered one of the hottest properties in Dutch football.

With Ziyech along with Kamohelo Mokotjo added to the already talented squad in Enschede, Twente must be regarded as one of the candidates to stop Ajax’s stranglehold on the Eredivisie championship this season.

One of the main reasons for Ziyech’s recruitment is to act as a replacement for Quincy Promes, who joined Spartak Moscow earlier this month for a reported €7 million.

Talking to, Ziyech said: “I knew before I went on holiday that Twente had an interest in me and this interest remained. The conversation I had with the coach, he persuaded me to make this choice, the right choice. He gave me the feeling that I will feel at home here and that I can play in my favourite position.”

Other clubs were interested too, especially Feyenoord, whose technical director Martin van Geel could not guarantee Ziyech a spot in the starting line-up in Rotterdam, which is maybe why Ziyech has swayed towards the move to Twente.


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Daley Blind would consider move to Manchester United

Despite the continuous reports in the English media, Ajax left-back Daley Blind insists has not heard the rumours linking him with a potential transfer to Louis van Gaal’s Manchester United, although he has stated he would consider a move if a ‘nice option becomes available’ writes Will Burns.

Reports indicate that new Man Utd boss Van Gaal is keen to add the 24-year-old to his squad at Old Trafford after he played a starring role in Holland’s unexpected progession to the semi-finals of the World Cup this past summer in Brazil.

Talking to Fox Sports Nederland after today’s 3-1 win away to AZ Alkmaar, Blind denied any suggestions linking him to the Red Devils said: “I have nothing to report, I’m happy here at Ajax.”

Although the defender refused to rule out the possibility of leaving the Amsterdammers if the right club approached him: “I certainly don’t need to leave and I am happy with all the support I receive here but if a nice option becomes available, then we’ll talk and then we’ll see.”

Blind has been with the reigning Eredivisie champions since the age of 8 years old and head coach Frank de Boer has already admitted that the club would not stand in Blind’s way if they received a suitable offer this summer for him.

Last week De Boer spoke to De Telegraaf and said: “We all know that if there is a price that we could not refuse, if that is offered then we’ll wish him all the best. But I have not heard anything so far, so I am assuming that he will still stay for another year.

Although De Boer did suggest that he thinks the player is ready for a big move: “I think it’s best for him, but on the other hand if the temptation is there, if such a big club comes in, he could adapt well.”


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Championship side Brighton sign battling midfielder

English Championship outfit Brighton & Hove Albion have completed the signing of hard-working midfielder Danny Holla on a free transfer with the Almere-born player signing a three-year deal until the summer of 2017.

The 26-year-old, formerly of FC Groningen, PEC Zwolle, VVV Venlo and ADO Den Haag, was present at the Seagulls’ 1-0 defeat at Birmingham City yesterday, before undergoing a medical and signing on the dotted line late last night.

Brighton’s Finnish boss Sami Hyypiä talking to said: “Danny is a player who has plenty of top-flight experience in Holland with more than 200 senior appearances, and that experience is something we need. 

He is a deep-lying midfielder and the scouting reports I have seen on him show he likes to get on the ball, pass it and dictate the play – and I hope he can bring that to the team.


However, Holla since rejecting ADO’s offer of a new contract in May has been without a club all summer, something Hyypiä will have to take into account: “He’s not been with a club during pre-season, so we will need to assess where is in terms of his match fitness, but hopefully we can get him up to speed and ready to go.” 

Will Burns will provide a thorough insight into the player last this week – stay tuned here at for details.


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Man City defender makes loan move to PSV

Young Dutch central defender Karim Rekik has returned to PSV Eindhoven on loan after arrival of Eliaquim Mangala put him further down the pecking order at Manchester City writes Will Burns.

PSV TV speaking to Rekik - image courtesy of PSV Media

The competition for places in the centre of the Premier League champions’ defence made a major stumbling block for the future of Rekik in Manchester.

The 19-year-old defender enjoyed a successful spell in Eindhoven last term under head coach Philip Cocu, where the youngster formed a great partnership with Jeffrey Bruma and made 25 Eredivisie starts. Then Dutch coach, Louis van Gaal was impressed with the performances of the 6ft 1inch defender, Rekik was selected in the Oranje’s 30-man provisional squad before the World Cup finals this summer.

PSV technical director Marcel Brands has been very vocal about wishing to take Rekik back into the squad this season and with the arrival of French international Eliaquim Mangala from Porto for £32million, City boss Manuel Pellegrini made the decision to let Rekik rejoin the Eindhoven club.

Today saw the announcement from PSV that Rekik has indeed joined on a season-long loan deal and could be ready to re-debut for PSV against NAC Breda this Saturday night at the Philips Stadion. This player must boost PSV’s title challenge and may see rivals Ajax, Feyenoord and FC Twente further strengthen their squads before the September 2nd transfer deadline.


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Dutchman interested in move to Man Utd

Manchester United target and Netherlands World Cup star Daley Blind has admitted that he would be open to a move to Manchester if new manager Louis van Gaal were to make an offer for him.

The Ajax defender has been constantly linked with a summer move to Old Trafford given the fact that Blind fits perfectly into the new 3-5-2 model of play that Van Gaal is implementing at the club.

Blind said, “For me, it is just about waiting but I am happy here in Amsterdam” and went on to say that “if something comes along his path, I will think about it.”

His focus remains on Ajax, but he finished the interview by saying, “we will see what happens next week”. Whether or not van Gaal has set a deadline for a new arrival remains to be seen but it seems quite strange that Blind would mention a specific time as to when he is expecting something to happen.

Ajax head coach Frank de Boer also weighed in by saying that “he will make the right choice and if he goes to a big club, he deserves it.” but went on to say that the defender would be better of staying in Amsterdam for another year to develop the quite competent skill set that he already boasts.

Manchester United recently lost out in the Thomas Vermaelen sweepstakes to Barcelona with the former Arsenal captain moving to Spain for a fee believed to be in the region of £13 million.

It is no secret that Manchester United are in the market for a left-footed defender and Blind is probably the most realistic target at this point in time. He is affordable, up for the move, knows Van Gaal and his system, and is versatile in what he can offer the club.

The 24-year-old has appeared for Ajax 100 times since his debut in 2008 scoring three goals during that time. He is also a fully fledged Dutch international footballer with 19 caps to his name, and the son of former Ajax footballer Danny Blind.


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Kamohelo Mokotjo – FC Twente grab a bargain

After a few weeks of rumours it is a done deal. South-African midfielder Kamohelo Mokotjo has left PEC Zwolle for FC Twente. They were not the only team chasing him. PSV and Ajax were more than interested and also some unknown clubs from the Bundesliga and Premier League wanted him but Martijn Hilhorst explains why…


Kamehelo Mokotjo and Alfred Schreuder – Image courtesy of

First of all because he was a bargain. In the previous season, he was one of the best players in the Eredivisie and he only costs €1.5 million. Before signing for PEC Zwolle, he played for Feyenoord, but the coach, then Ronald Koeman, did not see his potential which made him leave for the ‘Blauwvingers’.

Fans of Feyenoord were not happy with this move, because it was clear Mokotjo has something special in him. He is a player who combines his passing accuracy (89%) with a fantastic tackling percentage (91%). With latter percentage, he was the best tackler in the Eredivisie with at least 50 tackles and he also had the highest duel success rate from every midfielder with 64.3% (both via @OptaJohan).  Another statistic which speaks for him is that rarely makes fouls, because he is secure and patient with his tackling. That is why he only received one yellow card in the whole of last season as a defensive midfielder.

As you know the last few months have been undoubtedly the best in the history of PEC Zwolle with a staggering 5-1 win in the KNVB Beker final win versus Ajax and a few days back the victory in the Johan Cruijff Schaal with 1-0 also against the Amsterdammers. A few players at Zwolle are partially the reason for this success, but most of the job was done by this brilliant all-round midfielder. Because of this, it is weird that he that costs FC Twente the pitiful sum of €1.5 million and that clubs in per example, the Premier League have not been paying attention.

He now left them for Twente where he signed a 4-year deal and he will wear jersey number 22. Twente is in the feared category 1 financial-wise, which means that the financial situation is far from perfect. When you are in that category the KNVB have to approve every transfer you want to make.  Therefore, because of the €15 million they just earned from Quincy Promes’ transfer to Spartak Moscow they immediately could sign him up. He will most likely start this weekend versus Cambuur because of the departure of Quincy ‘The Promise’, Dušan Tadić and Felipe Gutierrez is absent due to injury.

Of the €1.5m sum, PEC Zwolle only receives around 900k, because when Mokotjo left Feyenoord they wanted around 40% of a future deal. So financial-wise and tactical-wise, it has been horrible week for Zwolle. Since his most-likely departure they are in talks with his possible replacement in the name of Ryan Koolwijk (ex-NEC), who is also in the interest of Swiss side FC Aarau. He could replace him, but quality wise, it would be an immense step back.

Kamohelo is a great midfielder, who is a great addition when in possession, or when you are chasing the ball. With his technique and ball control, he would not be a stranger in the way FC Twente plays. After this season many (international) clubs will realise what an enormous mistake they have made not to buy him.


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The Mirror report of a Tottenham Hotspur bid of €10M plus Belgian winger Nacer Chadli for World Cup starlet Memphis Depay has been rubbished by leading PSV Eindhoven journalist Rik Elfrink.

The problems with the reports seem to stem from the fact that there has been no bid and PSV also want more money for the 20-year-old. Elfrink also went on to state that Depay is a probable starter tomorrow night when the Dutch side meet SKN St. Polten tomorrow night in a Europa League qualifier. The young Dutch forward is in Austria with the squad, which would be strange if a bid had been received and accepted.

Depay, who was named on the short list for young player of the tournament at the World Cup, scored two goals for his country during the group stages and has already appeared 60 times for PSV tallying 17 goals in the meantime.

It is no secret that he is highly sought after and White Hart Lane might be an ideal destination for the next stage of his development but in this instance of speculation it is simply a rumour.


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Liverpool & Spurs target set for Lille loan

Belgian wonderkid Zakaria Bakkali’s future is a hotly contested one at the moment. Talks of an imminent move to Atletico Madrid are being followed up with reports of a loan move to Lille once the move to the Spanish capital is complete.


Lille’s sporting director, Luc Devroe, invited the teenage sensation to watch the game between Ostende and Anderlecht last weeked. Devroe then confirmed that Bakkali is set to move to Lille a soon as his move to Atletico Madrid is finalised.

The teenager, currently a member of PSV Eindhoven’s squad, is believed to be in Madrid to discuss terms with the La Liga champions and Champions League finalists with a moving looking very likely, although personal terms are the only thing left to be agreed upon.

Bakkali is currently the youngest member of the Belgian national team squad and beame the youngest ever player to score a hat-trick in the Eredivisie, when he did so against NEC Nijmegen last season.

The Liverpool and Tottenham Hotspur target is currently training with PSV’s second squad when available despite a deal being in place that will take him to the Rojiblancos in Spain.


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Spurs and Man Utd target considers move

Highly-rated PSV winger Memphis Depay, believed to be a target for Premier League duo Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur, has said that he will consider leaving the Eindhoven club.

The 20-year-old impressed at the World Cup finals in Brazil this summer after an excellent campaign in the Eredivisie and now Depay has admitted that interest from the bigger clubs in Europe would prompt him to think about a move.

“I have done my time at PSV but if big clubs from big leagues ask, I will think about it. There is lots of interest but there is definitely an option to stay” he said. “I understand fans want me to play well this season in Eindhoven, but I’m one who decides how my career continues, no one else.”

Depay is under contract at PSV until June 2017 and it is reported that it would take a fee of over €20 million for PSV to consider the player leaving. In the player’s mind, one would have to say Manchester United, now managed by Louis van Gaal, would be the favourites to sign Depay. Former Oranje coach, Van Gaal was working closely with the winger in last month’s World Cup.


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