Tag Archives: Memphis Depay

Depay or Wijnaldum? Did Manchester United buy the wrong player from PSV?

PSV had perhaps their best team for years last season and clinched the Eredivisie with relative comfort, with Memphis Depay and Gini Wijnaldum taking most of the plaudits. Both managed to secure a move to the Premier League, but they have had differing fortunes in England. The former has struggled and has lost his place in the side to the homegrown Jesse Lingard, which shows how Depay has under-performed this season. Meanwhile, Wijnaldum has been a revelation for Newcastle, despite their struggles as a side. He has stood out as a complete midfielder capable of taking his Eredivisie form into the Premier League, which begs the question, why weren’t there bigger clubs in for him last summer? And did Manchester United buy the wrong player from PSV last summer asks Jake Jackman.

20160130 - Depay vs Wijnaldum

Manchester United wanted to add some attacking talent to their squad over the summer and opted for Depay, who was excellent last season for PSV, scoring 22 goals and getting 5 assists. However, Manchester United don’t play out and out wingers, which has prevented Depay from settling in. Also he is only 21 years old and perhaps Manchester United underestimated how much time the Dutchman needed to reach his best form. He has scored just two goals in 17 league appearances and has looked like a weak link at times, especially against Stoke when the first goal was down to his poor touch.

The one time dominant force of English football haven’t managed to get a balanced partnership in central midfield, with Bastian Schweinsteiger, Michael Carrick and Morgan Schneiderlin being very similar, and none of them offer that attacking impetus from deep, which makes the team one dimensional in attack. This is why I feel Georginio Wijnaldum would have been a better fit for Louis van Gaal’s side this summer, as he can play in central midfield, and he is a forward-thinking player, who would have given their midfield another dimension. It’s odd that the club didn’t at least try to sign Wijnaldum, considering that the manager knows him well from his time as manager of the national side.

Another reason why Wijnaldum would have been a better fit is that he has been involved in transferring clubs before, and he is far more experienced than Depay. This has allowed him to be better prepared for moving to a new league, which is evident in his immediate impact. He has nine goals and three assists for Newcastle, and he still has 16 games to play. The Dutchman has a great chance of securing a big goal tally for the season, which is rare for a midfielder in his debut Premier League season. He has the potential to be one of the most complete midfielders produced in the Netherlands since Wesley Sneijder. Although he would have had less freedom at Manchester United, he would have been a better fit than Memphis Depay and would have been a big improvement on their current midfield options.

It is concerning to see the failures of Depay this season and Manchester United doesn’t look a good fit for him. Hopefully he manages to make an impact in the second half of the season as he has a lot of talent and it would be a shame for his confidence to be hit so soon after his big money move. If he doesn’t do any better before the summer, he should try and look for a move away from Old Trafford, unless van Gaal departs as it doesn’t look like he will ever have sustained success under his former national team manager. In hindsight, Depay should have moved to a smaller club, in order to bridge from PSV to a huge Champions League club, like Wijnaldum has.



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PSV spoil Memphis’ return to Eindhoven






It was a night marred with a horrendous injury to Luke Shaw, but PSV will treat this as a night to remember, a great return to the Champions League with an unlikely victory against Louis van Gaal’s Manchester United writes Will Burns.

As the teams emerged this evening, the atmosphere was electric and for good reason. The Philips Stadion had not seen Champions League football since the 2008/09 season when current head coach Philip Cocu was actually on the pitch at that time for PSV. This time he was leading from the sideline and grabbed a vital victory in Group B of the Champions League.

With Memphis Depay returning ‘home’ of sorts, Louis van Gaal handed a first start to £58m man Anthony Martial in the lone striker role for the Manchester United. The Red Devils came out with a high press, especially on Andrés Guardado, hustling the midfielder from the off. The match failed to get going and the visitors were forced make an early change after quarter of an hour when Luke Shaw suffered a suspected broken leg.

The left-back was moving at pace and made a great run into the PSV area, he was then met head-on with a strong challenge from Hector Moreno. The Mexican defender immediately moved away from the area looking distressed which explained to all it was a bad one. Shaw was replaced by Argentine international Marcos Rojo after a six minute delay to comfortably remove the England defender from the pitch. No booking, no penalty, no foul was given by Italian referee Nicola Rizzoli – Moreno left his feet in the challenge and was lucky to still be on the pitch.

The compassionated fans applauded Shaw off and the minutes surrounding the injury gave the stadium a real subdued feel. Once the game got going again, PSV pressed dangerously with the speed of Luciano Narsingh and Maxime Lestienne causing some trouble but the flag of the linesman was raised more than often halting the play.

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Although the game was playing at a good tempo, we had to wait 38 minutes for our first chance as Chris Smalling nodded wide from a Juan Mata free-kick. In the second chance of the game, three minutes later, we had the opening goal. Daley Blind sliding in former PSV favourite Depay, whom overpowered Santiago Arias, slipping his challenge with great footwork and slotted home with a goal that the attendance has seen time and time before.

The former PSV hero could have grabbed his second just a minute later. Mata gifted Depay a ball which sent the winger wide and subsequently dragged his shot the wrong side of Zoet’s post. The hosts were on the ropes and Smalling, somehow found himself through on goal and forced a strong stop from Zoet to keep the score at 1-0.

The lead only lasted six minutes as Cocu’s men grabbed a fortunate equaliser on 47 minutes. Lestienne with a whipping corner and defender Moreno easily rose over Matteo Darmain and the Mexican’s effort skimmed off Blind’s head to nestle into the net.

The second half began an even contest with both sides using swift attacks to build chances but neither goalkeeper were trouble initially before Narsingh gave David de Gea no chance with PSV’s second goal.

As they threatened in the first half, PSV’s famous counter attacking football gained them the unlikely lead. Great awareness from Guardado spotted the troublesome Lestienne sitting on the high defence of United. The Belgian received the ball and sped down the left and crossed at the back post for the unmarked Narsingh nod home from yards out and the Philips Stadion erupted.

Van Gaal’s side should have been level soon after, Bastien Schweinsteiger lofted a wonderful ball over the PSV back four, putting it on a plate for Mata, but the Spaniard failed to control the ball and the Eindhoven jeers and cheers sounded out to sarcastically congratulate him.

The visitors dominated and hunted the equaliser but lacked options in the final third. Van Gaal added Marouane Fellaini into the mix replacing Ander Herrera but the big Belgian, like on Saturday in United’s 3-1 win over Liverpool; he did not have any affect.

United’s energy waned and the long balls were being booted forward as PSV got men behind the ball and rode out the unlikely win.

It was great performance for PSV who finally deliver some good news for the Eredivisie and Dutch football in general. The Eindhoven side had done their country proud tonight and on the final whistle they celebrated like they had lifted the trophy, not just a victory in their first game.


PSVZoet – Arias, Bruma, Moreno, Brenet – Hendrix, Pröpper, Guardado (Schaars 72) – Narsingh, De Jong, Lestienne (Locadia 86).

GOALS: Moreno 47, Narsingh 57.

BOOKINGS: Arias 55, Moreno 60, Bruma 71.

MANCHESTER UNITED: De Gea – Darmian, Smalling, Blind, Shaw (Marcos Rojo 24) – Schweinsteiger, Herrera – Young (Valencia 86), Mata, Depay – Martial.

GOALS: Depay 41.

BOOKINGS: Smalling 67.

MAN OF THE MATCH: Joshua Brenet (PSV)



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Manchester UnitedPSV Eindhoven are set to venture into the Champions League group stages for the first time since 2009 and their first opponents are one of the most successful clubs in the world. Manchester United have claimed the European Cup silverware three times as well as winning the Cup Winners Cup in 1991 and arrive in Eindhoven on Tuesday to face Philip Cocu’s men.

Memphis Depay, PSV’s record sale of any player in their history, arrives home to face his former side and will look to make an impact which he has failed to do so far in the Premier League. The 21-year-old winger, however did help the Red Devils qualify for the group stages notching twice in part one of the Playoff round against Club Brugge at Old Trafford.


Manchester United defeated bitter rivals Liverpool 3-1 at Old Trafford on Saturday evening however, in all fairness it was a poor game including an atrocious first half. There was no creative spark for Van Gaal’s side, which looked like they lacked energy and passion. Apart from left-back Luke Shaw getting forward there was very little to admire from either side.

In a 4-2-3-1 formation, the powerful big Belgian Marouane Fellaini was used as makeshift centre-forward in the absence of the injured Wayne Rooney but failed to make an impression. Although, United were the home side, they seemed to be restricted by their tactical straitjacket enforced on them without Rooney, but still against a poor Liverpool side, who have only scored three goals all season, they still ran out 3-1 winners.

The second half showed an improvement from the Old Trafford outfit mainly due to new sense of urgency that half-time substitute Ashley Young (replacing Depay) brought on with him. Former Ajax man Daley Blind scored a good goal just after the break, although Brendan Rodgers’ men did not look switched on to close the Dutchman down.

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One thing Van Gaal has constructed in Manchester is a well-organised defence, even though some second-half chances from the Reds made the back four look uncomfortable under pressure. The inexperienced Joe Gomez gave away a penalty to set-up Ander Herrera to make it 2-0 and after Christian Benetke (Liverpool) grabbed a consolation with a perfect overhead kick, a young Frenchman appeared off the bench to send the 75,347 into raptures.

The £58.8 million price tag was deemed as ‘ridiculous’ by Van Gaal prior to Saturday’s game, but 18-year-old Anthony Martial, a window signing from AS Monaco, killed the game off in style and paid off a tiny bit of monstrous fee. With great composure the teenager, making his debut, had veteran defender Martin Skrtel retreating before placing a shot into the Liverpool net.

PSV could trouble United come Tuesday night with their precision passing and speed off the counter. Look for Maxime Lestienne to stress out Darmain in the right-back position and Luuk de Jong should prove to be a handful, especially if the much smaller Daley Blind is sitting in central defence.

Manchester United will be without Rooney through injury and Van Gaal may look to the young Martial to make his first start and gain further confidence after his dream start.


Great tactician. Disciplinarian. Legend. Can all be words to describe former Ajax manager Louis van Gaal, who has one Champions League medal himself with the Amsterdammers. The 64-year-old stepped into the Red Devils’ hot-seat after David Moyes failed to succeed Sir Alex Ferguson, when the famous Scotsman retired in 2013.

The clipboard wielding Dutchman has had little success in his tenure in Manchester so far, but this is indeed a transitional period for the 20-time league title winning side, where Van Gaal is bringing in his own players, own formation and own style of football to the Premier League.

KEY PLAYER: Memphis Depay

If Memphis Depay is going to pick his game up, surely the Philips Stadion is his perfect stage to perform this act. The 21-year-old is physically strong, fast and skilful so has all the credentials to be a top player but looks to having a tough time adjusting in the Premier League. Obviously, PSV head coach Philip Cocu knows the player very well and will look to Colombian right-back Santiago Arias to control Depay and keep him quiet. Arias will find it hard to discover a tougher task in his career, although as he proved in Saturday’s 6-0 win away to SC Cambuur, Depay may have to do some defending of his own.


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Depay, Wijnaldum, Clasie and Co – Eredivisie to the Premier League

With Holland being a constant production line of talent, here is a post that profiles some of the players making a move from the Eredivisie to the Premier League this summer writes Oliver Baise.

Memphis Depay: PSV to Manchester United- £25 million

By far the most high profile and expensive move across the North Sea, Memphis (as he likes to be referred to as) arrives at Manchester United with huge reputation following a season where he scored 22 Eredivisie goals, thereby cementing his status as one of the most exciting young players in the world.

Though he was primarily deployed by PSV as a left-winger that cuts in on his right foot, it is being suggested that Memphis may well be groomed as the eventual heir to Wayne Rooney as the man to lead the line at United, a rumour that has been strengthened by the fact that he has been handed the number nine shirt for pre-season games. For now, however, it is likely that he will compete with Ashley Young for the left wing spot in Louis van Gaal’s 4-3-3, as well as backing up Rooney up top.

Memphis will have to deal with the pressure of making a step up to a club of United’s stature, particularly with comparisons to Cristiano Ronaldo being made by sections of the Old Trafford faithful, due to his trickery and eye for the spectacular. However, his most impressive trait that he shares with Ronaldo is his obsessive desire to fulfil his immense potential and to improve day in and day out. It is this factor, beyond all else, which persuaded Van Gaal to part with £25 million for the 21-year-old.

Georginio Wijnaldum: PSV to Newcastle United- £14.5 million

With Ligue 1 long being Newcastle United’s Chief Scout Graham Carr’s quarry for bargains, the capture of Wijnaldum may be the start of a shift of focus towards trawling the Eredivisie for additions to Mike Ashley’s investment portfolio. This is because even at £14.5 million, a sizeable transfer fee for the Magpies’ standards, Wijnaldum has to be one of the coups of the season, as is the player’s immense quality. Not many can claim to have captained their club to a league and cup double at 24 but this, alongside having been a regular starter for the Dutch national team for several years now are but two feathers in Wijnaldum’s cap.

More impressively still has been the fact that he has excelled in a number of roles during his short career, including the right wing, central midfield and number ten position, emphasising both his completeness as a player and his professional attitude. He has however stated that his favoured position is playing just off the striker, and there may be concerns that he, Siem De Jong and Moussa Sissoko may cause an overload in one position for The Toon. Questions may also be raised in why a player who has achieved so much in the last two years on both the domestic, European and international stage has moved to Newcastle United.

One certainly hopes that his relatively modest destination ensures that he remains a regular first team starter as his presence should be a real treat for Premier League fans (except maybe the Sunderland ones).

Jordy Clasie: Feyenoord to Southampton – £8 million

A player who has followed in the footsteps of Graziano Pelle and Dusan Tadic in following Ronald Koeman from the Eredivisie to England. Saints fans will certainly be hoping that Clasie can emulate the success of his new team-mates. Given his most recent season at Feyenoord, they certainly have every reason to be hopeful. A defensive midfielder, Clasie has seemingly been signed to take the place of Morgan Schniederlin, although he is by no means a like for like replacement for the Frenchman.

At 5”7 and resembling a 12-year-old boy, Clasie lacks Schniederlin’s physical presence. Although he more than makes up for this with his tenacity (cue a lazy comparison to Edgar Davids) it will be interesting to see how he handles the step up in physicality that the Premier League presents him with. Where Clasie does offer an improvement to Schniederlin is in his technique and intelligence. He is one of those players like Michael Carrick or Xavi who always seems to have time on the ball and can dictate play to a level that belies his 24 years.

Though he is a shy and introverted character who displayed nerves when he came onto the scene at both club and international level, his close relationship with Koeman should ensure that Clasie does not disappoint Southampton fans — that is until Liverpool or Manchester United inevitably utilise their newest feeder club.

Cuco Martina: Twente to Southampton – £1.5 million

While certainly the less exciting Southampton import from the Eredivisie, Cuco Martina may yet play an important role for the Saints this season, particularly given their involvement in the notoriously squad-stretching Europa League this year.

The player had an unremarkable season in what was a poor campaign for FC Twente last season, and it is his versatility rather than his individual quality which likely brought him to St Marys. He is a natural right-back but can play anywhere across the back four or in defensive midfield.

Though he is unlikely to start regularly in any of these positions, barring injuries to team-mates, he may yet prove to be an important signing following the departures of Nathanial Clyne and Toby Alderweireld. Don’t expect fireworks though.

Steven Berghuis: AZ Alkmaar to Watford – £4.5 million

A free scoring winger who had a trial at Chelsea and Tottenham Hotspur as a youngster, Steven Berghuis is a player that AZ fans will certainly miss following his 11 goals for them last year. Despite this, there are some concerns about his suitability in joining a club like Watford.

Although he is by no means a lazy player, he may well prove to be too lightweight to be effective in a team regularly playing on the back foot in games, and although he has the creativity to unlock defences in tight games, he is by no means complete enough to carry a struggling team.

In short, his personal success may be heavily predicated on the success of the Watford project as a whole. If they can thrive in the Premier League continuing their attacking style, Hornets fans are in for an exciting prospect as he certainly compliments this strategy. However, in games where Watford need to sacrifice inspiration for perspiration Berghuis may well be the fall guy.

Kristoffer Nordfeldt: SC Heerenveen to Swansea City – £800k

Though not likely to be a starter ahead of Lukas Fabianski, especially considering the Pole’s fine form last season, Swansea City’s signing of Kristoffer Nordfeldt is a further example of the value that can be found in the Eredivisie this window.

The goalkeeper was Heerenveen’s player of the season last campaign, keeping ten clean sheets and making the most amount of saves out of everyone in the league. He will certainly be one of the better second choice goalkeepers in the Premier League this coming season, despite being one of the least expensive. If Fabianski were to suffer an injury or dip in form Nordfeldt would certainly offer a solid replacement and may prove hard to dislodge, particularly given the fact that his ability with the ball of his feet endears himself to Swansea’s possession based style.

For now, however, it is likely that the principal of “if it ain’t broke don’t fix it” means that Nordfeldt will begin this coming season on the bench.


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Total Dutch Football 2014/15 Player of the Season


After yet another set of entertaining Eredivisie and KNVB Beker campaigns, the TotalDutchFootball.com workforce has been voting all week and we are now ready to dish out our prestigious first ever ‘End Of Season’ awards.

All staff were asked to name their top three players. Each first pick received three points, second place received two points and one point was awarded for the third pick. The results are below…



Winner – MEMPHIS DEPAY (PSV) 15 points

Like his manager, Philip Cocu, Depay was a unanimous winner picked first by all five voters. Over the past season no-one can doubt that without Depay, PSV would not have experienced the success they have this term. Depay notched 22 Eredivisie goals along with five assists that earned him major plaudits across the globe and a four-year deal at Louis van Gaal’s Manchester United next season.

His superb free-kick technique led to seven of those goals  – leaving most goalkeepers stranded as he lined up the set pieces from the edge of the area.  The flamboyant winger hit an average of 5.4 shots per game (according to Opta) and three assists (from 2.1 key passes per game).

With his tremendous determination, speed, skill and awareness, Depay has linked up well down the left with Jetro Willems (our runner-up). Connecting with the left-back has helped the 20-year-old create 13 goals in the league (an Eredivisie high).

This cocky youngster is heading to the Premier League, to a team who used to try and contain the cockiness of one Cristiano Ronaldo. He has all the attributes and swagger to hold his own in comparison to the now-Real Madrid star.

PSV and Eredivisie watchers will thank Depay for the memories this season and it is sad to see him go abroad but I’m sure all, including all the readers of this website, wish him good luck and keep chasing those dreams.

2nd – JETRO WILLEMS (PSV) 6 points

Depay’s team-mate is runner-up after a successful season appearing in 30 out of the 34 leagues games for PSV. Willems was a vital part of the Eindhoven set-up this year under Philip Cocu and they will be hoping to hold onto him as long as they can.


JASPER CILLESSEN (Ajax) 2 points


LUUK DE JONG (PSV) 2 points

MICHIEL KRAMER (ADO Den Haag) 1 point

HAKIM ZIYECH (FC Twente) 1 point

MARKO VEJINOVIC (Vitesse) 1 point


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A Dutch injection of youth

The end of an era is inching closer:

Arjen Robben 31 years old, 86 appearances, 28 goals

Robin van Persie 31 years old, 96 appearances, 49 goals

Klaas-Jan Huntelaar 31 years old, 71 appearances, 39 goals

Wesley Sneijder 30 years old, 113 appearances, 28 goals

Rafael Van Der Vaart 32 years old, 109 appearances, 25 goals.

These players have been the staple of the Oranje for the last seven years, now all of them are on the wrong side of thirty. To say that they do not have valuable playing time left would be foolish, Robben is having the best scoring year of his career, and if not for injuries would have eclipsed the twenty goal mark for the first time in the Bundesliga, while Van Persie was the leading goal scorer for Manchester United before also picking up an injury. These injuries are proof that these legendary Dutchmen are slowing down, and that father time is creeping up on them. It is time for change, time for new stars to be bloom and become legends themselves.

Thankfully for the Oranje Crush, young players are making strides at all levels, making their debuts for clubs in Holland, moving to bigger leagues, and are donning the KNVB jersey for the first time at a senior level left, right and center. So who will be the stars of the future? Which players will shine bright on the international stage? Thomas Tittley investigates…


If anyone in the footballing community has not heard of the electrifying left winger by now, they shall soon be introduced to his brilliance as he has just signed for Manchester United and Dutchman Louis Van Gaal. Compared by many to Ronaldo, Depay surprisingly made the national team during the World Cup in Brazil last summer, however was far from disappointing, scoring twice including a stunner against Australia.

The 21-year-old has incredible pace and balance, able to explode down the wing with his fantastic dribbling skills, cut into the middle causing defenders to twist and turn, before releasing a powerful strike with his cannon of a right foot. The young man has found the back of the net 22 times in the Eredivisie this season, many of which have been highlight reel goals, including a whopping seven free kick goals.

Depay will play left wing, a position where the Netherlands have lacked scoring for several years, with Eljero Elia, Ibrahim Afellay and Jeremain Lens all failing to make a serious impact on the squad. Eventually, the young man will have to replace Robben as the main threat on the wing. He will undoubtedly become a world-star, however will he be a big enough star to lead the Oranje to their first major international trophy since 1988.


Yes this one is somewhat surprising, but every great squad needs a great striker up front, and Dost has all the tools to become a great striker. No other country in the world has produced as many quality strikers as the Netherlands, from Marco Van Basten, to Patrick Kluivert, Ruud Van Nistelrooy and Robin Van Persie; there is seemingly no end to the talented goal-scorers. Unfortunately for Holland, Robin Van Persie, the all-time leading scorer for Holland, and Klaas-Jan Huntelaar, the third leading scorer, are both 31-years-old.

Dost offers a glimmer of hope, the 6’5 Wolfsburg striker is one of the most polarizing players in football, fans do not know if they should despise his inconsistent play and slow starts, or marvel at his goal scoring tally. Incredibly, Dost has scored 16 times in the Bundesliga, despite having only one goal through the month of November. While he was on his scoring streak he had a shooting percentage of 82%, scoring on more than eight out of his every ten shots. With Dost, the Netherlands could play beautiful attacking football, with him holding the ball up for the insane amount of pace that Holland possess on the wings, very similar to how PSV played with Luuk De Jong. Yet when you have a 6’5 striker who is talented in the air, sometimes the temptation to go route-one is too strong, which was evident against Turkey a few months ago. This temptation is something Guus Hiddink should try and stay away from as it takes the rest of the squad out of the flow of the game and is easy to defend.

Bas Dost could end up as either one of the most prolific strikers in Europe or a total bust, for now just enjoy his quality in front of goal, and pray that he continues to develop.


The 24-year-old Wijnaldum is the rare midfielder that combines skill and athleticism, capable of picking out a brilliant pass, as well as beating a defender for pace. He showed this talent while playing for the Oranje in Brazil last summer where he impressed with his distribution ability and even scored in the bronze medal game against Brazil.

The young man playing in Eindhoven has converted from a winger, which he played at the Under 21’s and was arguably Hollands best player during that tournament, to a box-to-box midfielder. Wijnaldum has impressed both offensively and defensively, as well as being the leader and organiser of the Eredivisie champions PSV Eindhoven. Scoring 13 goals and three assists throughout the season, he impressed many using his athleticism to take defenders on and has terrific finishing in front of goal. Since moving to the midfield he has thrived, his passing ability evident averaging 32.8 passes a game, 1.2 of which are key passes, with and 84.7% success rate (WhoScored.com).

Wijnaldum has also embraced the new defensive responsibilities with 1.1 tackles a game and one interception a game, pretty fair for someone who was a winger two years ago. Now it is time for Wijnaldum to take on a new challenge, with the brilliant season for PSV behind him, Premier League squads are eyeing the attacking midfielder who has been linked with Manchester United, Newcastle United and Liverpool.


Injuries have ravaged promising careers of Dutch players, such as Elia and Afellay, who showed so much promise, were slowed by multiple long term injuries. The Netherlands should pray that Kevin Strootman is different. When healthy, he is one of the best distributors in the world, capable of picking out a pass with ease and slicing open a defence like a knife through cheese. After the 25-years-old Strootman moved from PSV to AS Roma for a hefty £17 million, great things were expected.

Unfortunately, a knee injury in March of 2014 kept him out of the World Cup where he would have without a doubt been the favourite to start in the midfield beside Wesley Sneijder. In January of 2015 Roma announced that Strootman needed ACL surgery which would keep him out for a lengthy period of time. Although these injuries seem grim, in only seven appearances for Roma he already has two assists, making 41.3 passes a game, 1.3 key passes a game, averaging a passing accuracy of 85.9% (WhoScored.com). Those are gaudy numbers for the playmaking Strootman, who will hopefully make a full recovery and continue to open up defenses on the international stage.

The Netherlands have been contending for big trophies for the past decade, if they wish to continue their success and add to the trophy case, then this injection of youth that was seen in the 2014 World Cup, will have to continue throughout the Euro qualifiers and beyond.

Data courtesy of Opta


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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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Can Man Utd’s new boy live up to his expectations?

Memphis Depay. A name which suits this 21-year-old, because it has strength, grace and you just can’t forget him. And the media makes sure this won’t happen with their numerous articles around the wonderboy based on Facebook-likes and vague social media posts. After all, the odds are looking good for the United fans. Mainly because of his connection with fellow Dutchmen and ex-coach Louis van Gaal writes Martijn Hilhorst.

‘LvG’ worked with the right-footed left winger at the World Cup in Brazil, in which Depay became the youngest Dutch scorer ever (at a World Cup). However, Louis van Gaal only made inquiries over the player’s availability last summer but decided to keep track of his progress rather than make a move. After 21 goals in the Eredivisie and his rising star we could state that his was a costly decision by the United manager.

The self-titled ‘Dreamchaser’, which is tattooed on his chest, have been compared to Cristiano Ronaldo and he could one day live up to this standard. According to Ed van Steijn, the man who scouted Ronaldo for United, he is better than the Portuguese was at his age: “If I compare him to a young Cristiano Ronaldo at the time, then Depay has more strings to his bow. I like him better’. And his coach Cocu also adds on the pressure by comparing him with his colleague at the Dutch squad: ‘Whether he can be as good as Arjen Robben? I think so.”

But can he live up to these expectations? When it comes to football ability, you can never tell for sure at this age, but mentality-wise without a doubt. In this aspect of football he is right up there with Madrid star Cristiano Ronaldo. Constantly improving his technique and physique and being highly frustrated when it won’t go his way.

Memphis on the ball and beginning to to dribble is truly a heart raising event. His physical superiority does not limit his technical abilities which is rare – akin to his eagerness. But those moments of magic are often replaced by losing possession, shooting from impossible corners and being too irritated. His consistency is something Depay needs to work on. In the Dutch competition it’s okay to have an off-day, but not on the level he sees himself playing at.

The semi-finals of a WC, single-handedly making PSV champions after this seven years with winning the competition and on his way to become top goal scorer in the same league. Depay is only 21 years old, but he has been extraordinary and magical in many games for the Netherlands and his club PSV. Who wouldn’t want a young mix between Arjen Robben and Cristiano Ronaldo for around £25m?

To hear more of my views on Depay, watch the latest edition of Stretty News TV below…


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Van Gaal clinches Depay’s most coveted signature

Premier League giants Manchester United have agreed a deal to sign Memphis Depay from Eredivisie champions PSV Eindhoven subject to a medical which will take place this weekend. The right-footed left winger will sign until the summer of 2019 with the option for another year. It’s believed that PSV received around £22 million for the Dutch international reports Martijn Hilhorst.

Depay have been playing wonderfully this season for PSV and is currently the top scorer in the Eredivisie with 21 goals (two more than colleague Luuk de Jong). ‘Memphis’ is just 21-years-old, but has already been compared to big stars such as Cristiano Ronaldo and Arjen Robben.

Depay was heavily linked with moves to Liverpool and Paris Saint Germain, but eventually choose Manchester United instead, where he will play under his former coach at the Netherlands, Louis van Gaal.

Depay on his move: “Time to set my goals again on winning trophies with Manchester United. I always say; dream, believe, achieve. I was dreaming and believing of becoming the champions of the Eredivisie with PSV and we achieved it. I’m extremely grateful towards PSV and all the fans for believing in me”.

Depay started at PSV when he was just 12-years of age, he made his debut in 2011/12 and scored 38 times in 88 Eredivisie matches since then. He also played fifteen times in the Dutch national squad, including the World Cup of 2014 in Brazil. His new coach, Van Gaal, let him make his debut for ‘Oranje’ in October 2013.


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BREAKING NEWS: Depay opens talks with Manchester United

It was revealed from AD Sportwereld tonight that PSV winger Memphis Depay has already had talks with Premier League giants Manchester United in regards to a summer move to Old Trafford.

20150419 - Memphis Depay

In what seems may be the biggest transfer move of the summer, Depay has been linked with moved to Liverpool, Paris Saint-Germain, Bayern Munich and Louis van Gaal’s Red Devils over the past twelve months. It is now understood that the player and agent Kees Ploegsma have already held discussions with officials from the Premier League side regarding a potential move.

The news was released in the tweet below at 11.32PM this evening.

For more news as it is released follow our twitter feed at @TotalDutchFB


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Five Things To Expect In 2015

The year of 2014 is over, and it was undoubtedly a year to remember for Dutch football. A largely unfancied National Team finished 3rd place in the World Cup, demolishing Spain 5-1 on the way, Frank de Boer won a fourth consecutive title with Ajax, becoming the first manager to do so, and Louis van Gaal took on one of the biggest jobs in management when he when he was appointed as the Manchester United manager. 2015 is sure to be another big year, but just what can we expect?

Frank de Boer will leave Ajax

In 2010, off the pitch, Ajax was in turmoil, with Johan Cruyff clashing with the board. On the pitch however, Frank de Boer was on his way to his first eredivisie title with the Dutch giants. He has gone on to win three more league titles, playing the “Ajax way”, focusing on developing the club’s youngsters and playing an attractive style of football. He has gained many plaudits for this and has attracted the interest of some of Europe’s top clubs in recent seasons, but has always claimed to be happy at Ajax, saying that he wants to do well in Europe with them before he leaves. However, yet again his Ajax side fell at the first hurdle in the Champions League, and at the age of 44, with his stock higher than ever, it’s looking more and more likely that he’ll leave for one of Europe’s major leagues. As for his successor…

Jaap Stam will take over the reigns at Ajax

Due to the revolution of 2010 at Ajax, the majority of staff now are former players, that include the likes of Marc Overmars, Dennis Bergkamp, Edwin van der Sar, Wim Jonk and Jaap Stam. When Frank de Boer leaves, it is likely that Ajax will appoint someone within their ranks to replace him. Overmars and Van der Sar both have roles off the pitch, whilst Bergkamp has stated that he never wants to become a manager. That leaves Wim Jonk and Jaap Stam, and whilst de Boer has stated that he thinks they could both do a good job, Stam seems like the more likely option.

Ronald Koeman will win Manager of the Season

At the end of last season, Southampton lost their manager, Mauricio Pochettino to Spurs, and also lost many of their star players to bigger English clubs, so by the time Ronald Koeman had taken charge, many pundits tipped them to struggle, and some even said they could be drawn into a relegation battle. However, Koeman brought in two players who had been excellent in the Eredivisie for the past two seasons in Dusan Tadic and Graziano Pelle, and has lead the team to an impressive start in the league, currently sitting fourth in the table, and if they can hold on for a top four finish, Koeman will surely be crowned the Premier League’s manager of the season, surpassing the achievements of his predecessor, even after losing many key players.

Memphis Depay, Georginio Wijnaldum and Jordy Clasie will leave the Eredivisie

2014 was the year that many of the biggest Dutch talents left the Eredivisie after impressing at the 2014 World Cup. Daley Blind moved to English giants Manchester United, Bruno Martins-Indi moved to Portuguese powerhouses Porto, whilst Stefan de Vrij and Daryl Janmaat moved to Lazio and Newcastle respectively. However, Jordy Clasie, Georginio Wijnaldum and Memphis Depay all decided to stay at their Dutch clubs for another season. All three have continued to impress in Holland and are attracting the interest of Europe’s biggest clubs. Clasie and Wijnaldum have both performed well on the pitch and have demonstrated good leadership skills in captaining their respective teams. Both have been linked with teams abroad, with Italy looking like likely destinations for both of them. With 10 goals and 3 assists in 13 appearances, Depay is clearly too good for the league, and is destined for much bigger things, with the likes of Real Madrid and Manchester United showing interest.

PSV will break their seven year title drought

PSV were the dominant team in Holland from 1999 to 2007, winning seven league titles, and even reaching the Champions League semi-final in 2005, narrowly missing out on reaching the final. However, since then, Louis van Gaal has led AZ to the Eredivisie title, Steve McClaren did the same with FC Twente in 2008-09 and Frank de Boer’s Ajax have dominated since then. This season though, Phillip Cocu has built a young side capable of reclaiming the title. With the likes of Depay, Wijnaldum and Willems leading the charge, it looks like Ajax’s four year reign is about to be over, and with a four point lead at the top of the table, PSV hold their fate in their own hands, and come May, should be champions.

Ron Vlaar will join a bigger club

Ron Vlaar, the Aston Villa captain, has been linked with a move away from Villa Park for the last year, due to his contract expiring at the end of the season. Vlaar’s stock rose due to impressive performances at the World Cup, including a semi-final performance in which he silenced Lionel Messi. It is likely that Vlaar will want to seek a move to a bigger club, it is just a question of when. Villa can either cash in on him in January or choose to keep hold of him until the end of the season and let him go on a free transfer. Arsenal and Liverpool have both been linked with him, but with Van Gaal at the helm, and the side in need of defensive reinforcements, Manchester United looks like the most likely destination.


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The underdogs of Zwolle have bitten another big dog and sent them away with their tails between their legs. This time it was the turn of Philip Cocu’s PSV to take home a 3-1 defeat to the hands of Ron Jans’ men after they lost superstar Memphis Depay to an early injury writes Will Burns.

Zwolle started debutant Warner Hahn in goal after the sale of Diederik Boer to Ajax on deadline day but it was his opposite number Jeroen Zoet was called into action first pulling off a save from the lively Jody Lukoki. Hahn’s gloves were warmed up minutes later as Depay fired a trademark free-kick at the young stopper. Depay, scorer of five goals in his last four Eredivisie games, did not last on the pitch much longer as he was struggling with a thigh problem and was replaced by striker Jurgen Locadia.

PSV were stupidly given a penalty kick by Joost Broerse after clearly handballing in the area from a corner kick. Luuk de Jong fired the ball straight down the middle to give PSV the lead and score his second goal of the campaign.

However, just before half-time the home side were given an equaliser by Zoet as Jesper Drost’s drive from the edge of the area was palmed in by the keeper. A shocking error that lifted the IJsseldelta Stadion as Zwolle surged on for a second, Cocu was desperate to hear Danny Makkelie’s half-time whistle.

Just after the hour-mark, tricky winger Ryan Thomas earned a free-kick after half-time substitute Oskar Hiljemark bundled him over around 30 yards out. The home fans clapped in unison as Broerse set-up the free-kick like a pole-vaulter at the Olympic Games. The 34-year-old defender smashed home a beauty to make it 2-1 and to earn redemption off the delighted Zwolle supporters for his earlier handball.

Ben Rienstra capped the night off after surging into the area, overpowering Hiljemark and chipping a wonderful effort over Zoet to cement the points late on.

Zwolle once again show tremendous character to win an important game inside a big atmosphere as PSV will now worry how long Depay will be missing from this team who are ready to mount a serious challenge for the league championship.


ZWOLLE: Hahn, Van Polen, Sainsbury, Broerse, Van Hintum, Rienstra, Lam (Van der Werff 90), Lukoki (Saymak 75), Drost, Thomas (Nijland 69), Necid.

SUBS NOT USED: De Jong, Ioannidis, Dekker, Moro.

GOALS: Drost 41, Broerse 65, Rienstra 87.

BOOKINGS: Broerse 32, Lam 62.

PSV: Zoet, Brenet, Rekik, Bruma, Willems (Jozefzoon 86), Guardado, Wijnaldum, Maher (Hiljemark 46), Narsingh, De Jong, Depay (Locadia 18).

SUBS NOT USED: Pasveer, Isimat-Mirin, Brenet, Hendrix.

GOALS: De Jong 32P.

BOOKINGS: Hiljemark 64, Bruma 90.

MAN OF THE MATCH: Joost Broerse (PEC Zwolle)


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AJAX 1 – 3 PSV

It was a great match between Ajax and PSV Eindhoven in ‘De Topper’ with lots of goals and entertainment. The away side ran out 3-1 winners at the Amsterdam ArenA, proving themselves as title challengers reports Jake Jackman.

It’s always exciting when Ajax and PSV Eindhoven meet in the Eredivisie and this match was no different, especially as many are tipping PSV to be serious challengers for the title this season. Ricardo van Rhijn was back in the starting eleven after his serious injury, while Daley Blind started in midfield, despite interest from Manchester United. The visitors had Kerim Rekik back in their defence, after he was again signed on a loan deal.  Memphis Depay had an early chance, but blazed over from the edge of the area. Ajax also had a good early opportunity as Davy Klaassen’s powerful header was saved well by Jeroen Zoet.

Ajax took the lead after 16 minutes after Anwar El Ghazi glanced a header over Jeroen Zoet who was closing down the youngster. The delivery from Klaassen was exceptional, but Zoet’s positioning was poor, don’t let that take away from the goal though, as it was a wonderful bit of quick thinking from El Ghazi on his first league start. The goal was perhaps against the run of play after PSV’s impressive start. The home side nearly doubled their lead, after a powerful run from Nicolai Boilesen, who played a one two with Lasse Schone, forced a good save out of Zoet with a low powerful shot inside the box.

Georginio Wijnaldum was one of the best players on the pitch in the first half, dictating play in the Ajax half when PSV had possession of the football and he forced a save from Jasper Cillessen mid way through the first 45 minutes. Calamity nearly struck for the away side as Van Rhijn’s ball was nearly sliced in by Joshua Brenet. His poor clearance could have went anyway, but luckily for Phillip Cocu’s men, it went wide.

Ajax started the second half on the front foot, with the right hand side of El Ghazi and Van Rhijn looking really good, but just minutes into the second half, the former had to be withdrawn. Ajax will be hoping that the injury isn’t too serious as the youngster has looked excellent in the opening few matches. Although the home side nearly doubled their lead through Schone, it was PSV who scored the first goal of the second half as Luciano Narsingh got past the Ajax defence utilising his pace, before he squared it to Memphis Depay, who slotted into an empty net. It was the Dutchman’s fifth Eredivisie goal of the season.

The pressure continued to build with Narsingh and Depay showing exactly why they are among the most talented attackers in the Eredivisie and it was the former who scored PSV’s second goal. Luuk de Jong picked up the ball in the Ajax half and played a perfectly weighted ball through to the winger who finished calmly past the Ajax keeper. The away side were showing exactly why many feel they will be title challengers this year.

The home side were pressing hard for an equaliser and came so close after Niklas Moisander was through one on one with Zoet, but fluffed his lines as his shot flew widely over the bar. Frank de Boer would have wished that chance had fallen to one of his forward players as it was the perfect chance to equalise.

Ajax continued to push for their second goal of the game as Schone fired just wide from a free kick, it was extremely close and PSV started to look nervy as they tried to take three points away from the Amsterdam ArenA. PSV always promised to be dangerous on the break and so it proved as they grabbed their third goal through Florian Jozefzoon who successfully got on the end of a long ball, despite pressure from Blind and Joel Veltman. The two Ajax defenders really should have done better.

Today showed again how pace exposes Ajax and other sides will have taken note of that. Especially in the second half, as Narsingh and Depay looked fantastic, while the link up play between those two, De Jong and Wijnaldum was brilliant. Ajax looked good at times, but PSV came here with a game plan and it paid off, they didn’t panic when they went behind and they showed their class in the end. The final week of the transfer window could prove pivotal for both sides as Ajax look likely to lose Blind, while PSV will look to strengthen further. This year’s title race should be intriguing, and like many said pre season, PSV will certainly be right in and amongst it.


AJAX: Cillessen, Van Rhijn (Serero 70), Veltman, Moisander, Boilesen (Ligeon 66), Klaassen, Viergever, Blind, Schöne, Sigthórsson, El Ghazi (Andersen 50).

SUBS NOT USED: Vermeer, Van der Hoorn, Kishna, Milik.

GOALS: El Ghazi 16.


PSV: Zoet, Brenet, Bruma, Rekik, Willems (Tamata 53), Wijnaldum, Hendrix, Maher (Hiljemark 70), Narsingh (Jozefzoon 80), De Jong, Depay.

SUBS NOT USED: Pasveer, Koch, Ritzmaier, Locadia.

GOALS: Depay 52, Narsingh 63, Jozefzoon 86.

BOOKINGS: Rekik 12, Depay 61.

MAN OF THE MATCH: Luciano Narsingh (PSV)


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