Real Madrid will need midfield reinforcements this season when the transfer window reopens, and now Le10sports has revealed that Zidane has maintained contact with Ajax star Donny van de Beek. The Spanish giants are not the only club though, with Newcastle and Everton also vying for the Dutchman’s signature.
The unsung hero Donny van de Beek
During their Champions League clash against Ajax, then Spurs manager Pochettino had held the midfielder in high regard. In an interview with El Pais, the Argentine manager had stated, “Van de Beek. Nobody talks much about him. But he has a dynamic in the game, he gets behind Tadic, he arrives, he works, he scores goals.
“Logically, I love De Jong and De Ligt. But the example of the operation of this Ajax is Van de Beek. I like very much. They have a young player, from the academy, in each line, that shows what the team is.”
This speaks volumes of the player and the kind of impact he has made in the team. It is not an exaggeration to say that for the past couple of seasons, Van de Beek has been the brain of the team. He has been central to the plans and the execution of those plans of Erik ten Hag’s side for some time now.
The ideal position of Van de Beek
The Ajax team plays in almost a similar model as the Real Madrid side. While Tadic, Neres and Promes have been playing up front, the midfield setup has mainly been constituted by the likes of Chelsea bound Hakim Ziyech and Van de Beek with the third slot often changing.
Almost throughout the season, the Eredivisie club have deployed a 4-3-3 formation with Van de Beek often on one of the sides of a centrally placed Ziyech. Even when the team had switched to a 4-2-3-1 setup, the 23-year-old had played just in front of the double pivot in the midfield with contributions at both ends of the pitch.
This season Real Madrid have sparsely featured the two attacking midfielders, James Rodríguez and Gareth Bale, and that has forced Zidane to use a 4-3-3 formation with Modric and Kroos in front of Casemiro in the midfield. This is where Van de Beek could be of great help to the team as Modric is nearing the end of his time with Real Madrid and the Ajax man would be an ideal replacement for him next season onwards.
The attacking contributions of Van de Beek
The primary facet of the Dutch man’s game is his passing skills. This term, he has made 1.8 key passes per game in the league, demonstrating his contributions in the attacking areas. Add to that, the fact that he has scored eight goals and helped with five assists in the 23 league matches that he has featured in and one would get the ideal midfielder that Madrid had been looking for.
While his display at the offensive end of the pitch has been remarkable, Van de Beek has also made two tackles per game for his side in the Eredivisie, highlighting his involvement at the defensive end. Overall, the Ajax player is the one to go for Los Blancos, and Zidane should snatch him away at the earliest opportunity.
Stats from Whoscored.
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