PSV putting money where the mouth is

When PSV general manager, Justin Sanders said that the club is now only fully focused on football the moment their financial clout has been temporarily diminished by the announcement that the Eindhoven city council has approved the purchase of the Philips Stadion land and De Herdgang training facility, PSV has moved to secure the services of FC Utrecht’s Kevin Strootman and Dries Mertens and have signed Georginio Wijnaldum from Feyenoord Rotterdam as well. You can read the news in Dutch over here. It’s rather amusing to see that the news report also shows Strootman and Wijnaldum undergoing their respective medicals at the club before penning their contracts. Still, it’s all good at the club – PSV have secured a promising defensive midfielder in Strootman; diminutive Belgian, Mertens as a winger; and one of the last few impressive names at Feyenoord, Wijnaldum. That’s where a club challenging for honours should be heading and I’m pleased that PSV have been active lately in the transfer market.

georginio wijnaldum

A quick peek at the club’s roster still confirms that the team is still short of a midfielder and a striker. The only anomaly signing was that of Khalid Sinouh (whom in Football Manager games I’ve never even bothered to cast my eyes at) who is 36 years old and have played rather sparingly in the last two seasons or so. Sinouh was intended to replace Jeroen Zoet who has been sent out on loan at RKC Waalwijk in order to gain more first team chances. We have seen goalkeepers prolonging their careers until their late 30s, so I won’t be surprised to see Sinouh being engaged on a rolling contract if necessary but we won’t see him featuring prominently in the first team for sure, seeing as Andreas Isaksson is still regularly turning out for the Sweden national team and is still relatively young for a goalie.

The arrivals of the Strootman and Co have not been met with enthusiasm from within the ‘Boeren’ ranks – AD Sportwereld reports that midfielder Otman Bakkal is not happy and thinks that now is the best time to leave the club. Sure, why not.

Meanwhile, Denny Koevermans, the giant forward has left the club for Toronto FC. Personally, I think that Koevermans was a reasonably good player at PSV and scored lots of vital goals for the club, only to be unceremoniously dumped at the beginning of last season in favour of erratic Brazilian, Jonathan Reis and Swedish talent, Ola Toivonen. Koevermans joins the Canadian club currently under the management of former Oranje national, Aron Winter. If it is of any interest, Winter is of part Chinese / Indian / Surinamese blood too. Former German international, Torsten Frings has also joined up with Winter.

As regards the Eredivisie contenders, I concede that Ajax Amsterdam, on paper at least, still has the better squad. Their defence is solid (Maarten Stekelenburg, Gregory van der Wiel, Jan Vertonghen and Toby Alderweireld), and the midfield is boosted by the arrival of former FC Twente player, Theo Janssen. Danish international, Christian Eriksen has also been touted as the next Laudrup by Johan Cruyff. Siem de Jong has also emerged as another talent with already one senior cap to his name in a friendly against Ukraine on 11 August 2010. If Frank de Boer could fend off continental interest for at least another year, they would be on course to defend their title. Of course, both PSV and Ajax would have to be wary of FC Twente who have made great strides in recent years and have a respectable setup with Denny Landzaat, Wout Brama, Luuk de Jong and seasoned campaigner, Sander Boschker.

PSV would have to strive really hard to make it to even the Champions League qualifiers with this team and would need an enigmatic signing in the form of Jefferson Farfan or Park Ji-Sung and Lee Young Pyo in order to work a miracle. Sometimes, the glory days just fade really fast but at least with the three signings, PSV may be on the right track.         


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