Tag Archives: Arsenal

Why should Arsenal sign PSV’s Denzel Dumfries?

As history has proven, the Eredivisie is a breeding ground for talented footballers that always make way to the dizzy heights of the Premier League, La Liga or the Bundesliga. Or even in recent times, the attraction of the even bigger payday in Russia or China.

One player that has really impressed over the last three seasons is PSV right-back Denzel Dumfries. At the ripe age of 22, Dumfries cemented his place as first-choice full-back for Netherlands head coach Ronald Koeman last year after exceptional performances in the UEFA Nations League.

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Tenacious – Denzel boots France’s golden boy Kylian Mbappe into touch

In addition, since moving to PSV this past summer, he impressed all eyes across Europe with stunning displays in the UEFA Champions League against Barcelona, Inter Milan and Tottenham Hotspur.

Over the next 12 months, Denzel will become a hot commodity and I see him fitting right at home at the Emirates Stadium for Unai Emery’s Arsenal.

Spanish full-back Hector Bellarin recently picked up a calf injury and the lack of depth at the position was glaringly obvious when his replacement turned out to be 34-year Swiss stalwart Stephan Lichtsteiner. The third-in-command would be Ainsley Maitland-Niles who is primarily a central midfielder.  For a big Premier League club like the Gunners, a 22-year-old attacking full-back would fit Arsenal’s system wonderfully and would challenge Bellarin for his shirt.

Dumfries possess all the attributes to be a success in England’s top tier. He is an imposing full-back standing at 6ft 2 with vast strength and physicality.  He bombs down the line with great attacking prowess as he holds tremendous pace. Creative, with good vision, he has currently 84% success passing rate in the Eredivisie and has also notched himself three goals so far in 2018/19 in 17 appearances for the Eindhoven side.

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But unlike many fast full-backs, he holds great awareness to gather himself, get back into position to deliver the crunching tackle to halt any attack. Ask Kylian Mbappe after experiencing this in the Dutch’s 2-0 win over France back in November last year. Dumfries has been vital in PSV’s success this term, they have just conceded eight goals in 17 games.

If Arsenal wanted Denzel immediately, they may be in for a wait. Dumfries is unlikely to leave before the summer and PSV will not want to lose him as they hold prime position to win the Eredivisie this coming May.

Come the summer transfer window, PSV may be ready to hunt for a new youngster to fill that role and Arsenal may have to pay a big price to get this talented youngster to move to London.


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Dennis Bergkamp – The Legend of the Iceman

Bergkamp’s undeniably one of the greatest players that the Premier League has ever seen and in terms of his international quota, the Dutch would also regard him as one of their greatest also. Bergkamp was famously known for his fear of flying, which inevitably gave him his nickname of “The Non-Flying Dutchman”. However, he was more recognised for the talent he displayed on the football field writes Ethan Gore.

Bergkamp was taught through the idea of Total Football, a playing style which relied on versatility which the Dutchman had as he could play anywhere across the front three. This ensured that the player fulfilled their potential and this was a method Ajax used a lot in their academy. Bergkamp was positioned at right-wing during his Ajax years but found his best position as a second-striker for Arsenal which allowed him more freedom in the middle of the park and he was able to express his creativity and flair. The arrival of fellow Dutchman, Overmars at Arsenal really improved Bergkamp as a player as he began to receive the ball a lot more and was able to showcase his talent and because of this, he was scoring and creating more goals making a household name all around Europe. Bergkamp functioned as an attacking midfield slightly but was more of a striker. However, his technical skills, vision and creativity allowed him to play that attacking midfield role with ease.

Bergkamp started out at Ajax as a youngster and played in the first-team for six years before leaving to join Inter Milan. Bergkamp’s Ajax years truly defined what type of player he was and enlightened the football world of the potential he had. Bergkamp really caught footballs fan’s attention in his European debut against Malmo FF in the European Cup Winners Cup in the 86/87 season, a very impressive display had people all over talking about him.

During his time at Ajax, Bergkamp established himself as a top goalscorer as he won the Golden Boot award three years in a row. The Dutchman won one Eredivisie title whilst at Ajax in 1990. Bergkamp was named Dutch Football Talent of the Year in 1990 and at the age of 22 was named as Dutch Football of the Year, an award he would win again only a year later. Bergkamp kept on his goalscoring form and was the World’s Top Goalscorer in 1992 and as a result of his goalscoring antics, it landed him a chance of winning the prestigious Ballon d’Or award however he missed out on being the number one player on two occasions as he finished as a runner-up in 1993 and finished third place 1992.

Due to his form at Ajax, clubs all over came calling for his services. Real Madrid were one of the clubs interested but he was advised not to go there and ended up joining Inter Milan as he was insistent on playing in Italy. He joined for a fee of £7.1m, which doesn’t seem like much but at the time, it was a big fee. Bergkamp found it difficult in Italy and the resolute defending was a problem for him as he found it a lot harder to score and work his way past such well organised defenders. Bergkamp had to wait until September to score his first goal for the club against Cremonese and in total he only managed 8 league goals in his first season despite being very clinical in both Europe and the cup competitions, scoring an additional 17 goals. However, he only lasted two seasons in Italy before finding that this wasn’t the right league for a player like him. His second season was a disaster and he only managed to score 3 league goals which was barely identical to his goalscoring form at Ajax.

Bergkamp signed for Arsenal in 1995, only two years after signing for Inter. Bergkamp broke the club’s record transfer fee set at £2.5m as the Dutchman was signed for £7.5m. Bergkamp was the start of something new at Arsenal, they’d be in decline for the past few seasons and they needed someone with International status that was a proven goalscorer to come in and make an immediate impact. Bergkamp did take his time to settle and failed to net in his first six games but with the impact he made at his 11 years at the club, it’s safe to say that the investment was a great one. It was against Southampton that Bergkamp would grab his first and second goals for the club. Bergkamp made 33 apperances for the Gunners in his first season, scoring 11 goals. Helping them to a fifth place finish, ensuring qualification to the UEFA Cup.

It was Wenger’s appointment that marked a turning point in Bergkamp’s career. Both player and manager advocated an attacking style of play which suited Bergkamp’s game a lot more and despite playing fewer games in 1996-97, Bergkamp scored more goals in the Premier League and created 13 goals making him a force to be reckoned with. Bergkamp scored 120 goals for the Gunners in 11 years at the club and is regarded as one of the club’s greatest ever players. Most notably his goal against Newcastle in 2002 was the greatest goal he scored for the club and it is now regarded as one of the best goals in Premier League history as a fantastic piece of skill to flick the ball around Newcastle defender Nikos Dabizas resulted in an easy finish into the bottom corner for Bergkamp. The Dutchman was also part of the Invincibles in 2003-04 that went the whole season unbeaten in the league and he contributed by scoring five goals, not as impressive as previous years at Arsenal but he was 35 years old and nearing the end of his career. Bergkamp retired at Arsenal in 2006.


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How does PSV replace Memphis Depay?

The announcement last week of the transfer of Memphis Depay to Manchester United has left PSV with a significant hole to fill.  Luckily for PSV, they have money in the bank now in order to try and fill this hole.  We all know and appreciate Memphis’ talents and he might be one of those once in a generation footballers but PSV need to ask the question “How do we Replace Memphis”? Even with Memphis leaving, PSV still have a very talented side but they will certainly miss the X-Factor that he provided.  Replacing Memphis will be a hard task but there are some options at PSV’s disposal.  Rogier Waalder looks at the candidates:

Jesus Manuel Corona (FC Twente)

One of the only players in the Eredivisie this year who catches the eye as much as Depay does, is the Mexican winger Jesus Corona, who plays for FC Twente.  A very tricky and skilful winger, he certainly has the ability to turn a game like Memphis does.  He has scored 13 goals in his 32 games this season and his dribbling, first touch and technique are in the same class as Memphis.  He does lack the power and free-kick abilities of Memphis but is only 22 years old.  FC Twente will be holding a fire-sale in the summer to clear their debts and so Corona is very much on the market.  A big stumbling block, though, is his wage demands with a recent poll showing that 85% of PSV fans do not think he is worth the reported 1 million EURO salary that he is after.

Sam Larsson (SC Heerenveen)

Swedish international Larsson is a new arrival to Heerenveen this season, after joining from Goteburg in the off-season.  He has proven to be yet another potential Scandinavian jewel that the Heerenveen scouting team has delivered over the years.  Has all the same hallmarks as Corona but represents a more powerful, cheaper option.  Larsson has contributed 8 goals and 6 assists in his 20 games this season. Heerenveen have already offered him a new contract, but he has refused to consider this at present.  He has a contract until 2018 so Heerenveen aren’t in any rush to sell but PSV might be tempted to make them an offer they can’t refuse.

Ricardo Kishna (Ajax)

Yes he plays for Ajax presently and yes this is probably the biggest obstacle in Kishna going to PSV, but transfers between PSV & Ajax are not unheard of.  Kishna is a year younger than Memphis and despite his young age has already proven that he can light up the Eredivisie.  His flair, trickery, dribbling and pace are very comparable to Memphis and he has a return of 5 goals and assists from 20 matches this season.  This current Dutch youth team player only has 1 year to run on his Ajax contract, so he could force the issue if PSV make a serious play for his services.

Elvis Manu (Feyenoord)

Plays for Feyenoord, so again some question marks surrounding a desire to sell him to PSV but he also has the hallmarks of someone who could replace Memphis.  A 21-year old natural Left Winger, Manu has had a good season for Feyenoord with 14 goals in 34 matches, including some great performances in the Europa League.  Manu has great pace and strength but his overall technique and consistency would need some improvement to reach Memphis levels but definitely a great raw talent.

Steven Berghuis (AZ Alkmaar)

Berghuis has been a standout performer for AZ this season with 10 goals in 22 appearances.  The former Twente youth player can play on either wing or as Striker and has excellent technical and passing abilities.  He has a strong desire to succeed (much like Memphis does) and would arguably be the cheapest of the options presented thus far.  He probably isn’t quite at the standard that Memphis is but would be a good squad player, in conjunction with another big name signing.

Bilal Ould-Chikh (FC Twente)

If PSV are looking at a longer term prospect that they can bring up to Memphis’ standard then Ould-Chikh might be their guy.  Only 17 years old he has already played 15 full games for FC Twente this season.  An out and out winger with great technique, pace and dribbling abilities Ould-Chikh certainly has the potential to rival Memphis one day.  FC Twente might be needing cash to satisfy their creditors at the moment, but surely they’ll want to hang on to their star prospect and try and build a team around him.

Adnan Januzaj (Manchester United)

Januzaj has been on the outer at Manchester United since Van Gaal’s arrival and was rumoured to have been offered as part of any deal taking Memphis to England.  It doesn’t look like this has eventuated but a cashed up PSV could do a lot worse than taking the talented Belgian to Eindhoven, even if it is on loan.  Even though he has not scored in the Premier League this year, the footballing world is very aware of Januzaj’s abilities with a ball at his feet and his technique and flair do rival those of Memphis.  He is on a massive salary at Man Utd and this is why a loan move but be the best for both teams, particularly as Memphis will certainly be a direct rival for Januzaj.

Serge Gnabry (Arsenal)

Another potential loan option is the Arsenal youngster, Serge Gnabry.  Like Januzaj Gnabry burst onto the scene last season before injury curtailed his plans and has had limited game time since.  He may be best suited to a spell in the Eredivisie, whilst also getting guaranteed Champions League action.  Gnabry has fantastic physical attributes and his attacking tendancies would be very well suited to this PSV side.

Ola John (Benfica)

For a 22-year old John seems to have been around for a long time, and certainly his club movements would indicate the same.  Currently at Benfica, the lure of returning home to PSV may be one that suits John as he looks to break back into the Dutch national team setup.  Another out and out pacy winger John could be the perfect provider for Luuk de Jong.

Filip Kostic (Stuttgart)

22-year old Serbian Kostic played 2 seasons in the Eredivisie with Groningen before earning a move to Stuttgart in the off-season.  He has played reasonably well in a struggling side with 3 goals and 7 assists thus far.  He has tremendous cross abilities and is also an accomplished finisher.  If Stuttgart do get relegated this season this might be enough to convince Kostic to return to the Netherlands and the lure of Champions League football.

There are some options available internally at PSV at present headlined by the wantaway Zakaria Bakkali and the raw but very inconsistent Florian Jozefzoon.  A long term potential replacement is the exciting young Steven Bergwijn, who made his Eredivisie debut on the weekend at the age of 17. Bergwijn is very highly thought of at PSV and has tremendous pace and acceleration.  If his technical abilities continue to develop over the next few seasons he is definitely one to watch.


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In the first Eredivisie match of the New Year, FC Twente took on lowly Heracles, who managed to pull off a couple of wins before the winter break, but got off to a poor start to the second half of the season. FC Twente took the lead early on in the first half and controlled the match throughout the rest of the 90 minutes as they won easily by a score of 3-1. The home side netted a penalty late on in the second half to seal the deal, which has also moved them to the top of the table, at least for the night. However, both Ajax and Vitesse should both be looking to win their matches fairly easily this weekend, so Twente will most likely fall back down into third place.

The Dutch giants came out attacking in a 4-3-3 formation with the sensational Luc Castaignos scoring the second goal of the match. The Twente footballers were allowed to roam from their positions moving forward in order to find space in between the opposition’s defense as they were always moving around. The young striker has scored in 6 of his last 7 Eredivisie matches. When Twente were in defense, they switched to a 4-4-2 formation to overload the midfield area and snuff out any space that might have been left from the other formation. In defense, there were usually 10 players behind the ball with two strikers playing off the shoulders looking to spring into a counter attacking movement looking to cut the opposition’s back four apart.

Kyle Ebecilio was a member of the Feyenoord youth academy until 2010 when European giants Arsenal snatched away this budding Dutch star. Ebecilio thrived in their youth system and broke onto the scene with the Dutch U17 squad where he won the Golden Player award at the under-17 European Championships back in 2011. However, Ebecilio wanted some first team action and he was not going to get it at Arsenal, so in May of 2013, the young Dutchman moved back home and signed a five year contract with FC Twente. Ebecilio stands at 1.82 meters tall and is a big presence in Michel Jensen’s midfield. At still just 18 years of age, Ebecilio wanted first team action and has certainly gotten some this season. In 19 league matches, he has made a total of 18 starts, while being an unused sub just one time.

Ebecilio has a very good work rate in him. He is always working hard, whether the club is moving forward in attack or going back and defending. The Dutchman is always looking for space to move into along the right side of the pitch to deliver crosses into the box so his teammates to get onto the end of them and slide them into the back of the net. Kyle will not blow by any defender but he will stretch the opposition’s defense apart with his triangle passing with his teammates along that flank. In the match against Heracles last night, he did just this.

Ebecilio has a very good work rate in him. He is always working hard, whether the club is moving forward in attack or going back and defending. The Dutchman is always looking for space to move into along the right side of the pitch to deliver crosses into the box so his teammates to get onto the end of them and slide them into the back of the net. Kyle will not blow by any defender but he will stretch the opposition’s defense apart with his triangle passing with his teammates along that flank. In the match against Heracles last night, he did just this.

Although he was fairly anonymous in the first half, Ebecilio stepped up his game in the second half. The young Dutchman got more involved in the attack as he managed to get a shot off, but it was not a good attempt at all. If there is one thing, his goal count will definitely not blow you away, but that is partially due to where he is being played at Twente. This was not the best match he has played this season, but Ebecilio is capable of much better and expect him to do so in the near future. By the time his contract runs out at Twente, he will still be just 23 years of age and look for the bigger clubs around Europe to be scouting him well before then. Despite last night’s match against Heracles, Ebecilio is an excellent player and will continue to develop into a phenomenal player and will feature with the Dutch National squad regularly.


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NEWS: Adam Maher… Holland’s hottest property!

Adam Maher – wanted by the Premier League’s best

It is no surprise to many following the game in the Netherlands that AZ attacking midfielder Adam Maher is perhaps most coveted Dutch footballer at the moment. 

Earlier this year in the January transfer window, English Premier League clubs knocked on the door of AZ Alkmaar, and now as the season ends and clubs around Europe await the opening of a new window, the English superpowers are ready to rumble throughout the summer for the Ducth international.

The Morrocan-born Oranje star is wanted by Eredivisie giants PSV and Ajax but the top clubs from the Premier League are in the market and they very well may tempt the playmaker to head to the British Isles.

British newspaper The Mirror have reported that Manchester City, Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur are some clubs that Maher would like to attract.

In AZ, they are only too well aware of the foreign interest. On Maher, as what happens with many young Dutch talents an excessively high price tag has been slapped on so that AZ can make some major profit. It is rumoured that interested clubs can tempt AZ to sell him for around £15.4m, which is approximately equivalent to €18m.

But which club is the preference for Maher?  Maher himself does not except anything to happen and says to he will wait until the summer. “I look to see which clubs are interested but nothing will be discussed until the summer. “

But as friend of the site, Scottish-based Dutch football expert Peter McVitie added, Maher has said over and over that he wishes to stay in Holland: ‘He has maintained since January that he wants to stay in Eredivisie and, since February, he has made clear that he wants to join one of Ajax or PSV in the summer. He lives in Amsterdam and has praised Ajax several times in recent weeks and he has actually said that he has an idea which club he would prefer to join.’

For Maher, who would like to leave with his ailing club, it is hoped that when he does leave this summer, AZ make as much as they can so they use the funds to be a force in the Eredivisie again.



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