We all need some normality in our lives, and what’s more normalising than some good old-fashioned transfer hysteria surrounding Ajax’s most highly-coveted assets?
It was Matthijs de Ligt and Frenkie de Jong last summer, but ever since his compatriots’ move to Juventus and Barcelona respectively, Donny van de Beek has stepped into the limelight.
The midfielder’s move to Real Madrid has been reported to the hilt, almost becoming parodical at times, but that has eased off in recent weeks – and it was even claimed last month that Manchester United could be in a position to steal him from under Los Blancos’ noses.
That, let’s be honest, is unlikely, but in any case, Van de Beek is in no hurry to make a decision. Alluding to Real’s alleged interest, he admitted he ‘has not started Spanish lessons yet’, so if he has made a decision on where he will be playing his football beyond this season, then he’s hiding it well.
“My feeling must be good at a club. How much do they want me?” Van de Beek told Helden, as per Goal.
“But I also have to fit in with the system that is being played and of course I also want to have an overview of playing minutes.
“Playing in the sun is always nice. But no, I certainly haven’t started taking Spanish lessons yet.
“I have not said yes to anyone, everything is still open. I know what I’ve got here, I am loved in Ajax and I love Ajax.”
The midfielder, who turns 23 this month, netted ten goals and registered 11 assists in all competitions prior to football’s enforced hiatus, and it’s thought Ajax stand next to no chance of keeping hold of him.
The reluctance to commit to a move is no new strategy from his PR team, however.
When asked last month, he expressed incredulity at the nature of the reporting surrounding his future, saying claims he was on the verge of a Madrid move were ‘premature’.
“It makes no sense, I can’t control what people say,” he said. “I think it is premature. I have often said: I will not hurry; I am fine here. If it happens, it happens.”