Manchester United completed their first signing of the season last week, with Dutch midfielder Donny van de Beek arriving from Ajax. The 23-year-old completed his £39million move on Wednesday and penned a five-year deal at Man United. Since his move, Van de Beek has talked to the media about his transfer to Man United, while also revealing the special reason behind his move to England.
The Mirror reported that the dream of his first coach Harm Grevink was one of the driving factors which made him move to Man United this summer. The young midfielder credits Harm Grevink for first spotting him during his Veensche Boys days, with Van de Beek thankful to the 73-year-old for recognising his talent. Van de Beek also explained that it was Grevink who gave him the confidence to come to Ajax as the coach said that Van de Beek had the talent to succeed at the club. Shedding light on his relationship with Harm Grevink, Van de Beek explained that he was like a private coach to him, always helping him with training whenever he was away from the club.
Van de Beek revealed that Harm Grevink doesn’t have long to live as the coach is dying. The Dutchman explained how his move to Man United has helped fulfil a lifelong dream of Grevink, who wanted to see Van de Beek play at a top club in Europe. Explaining the reason behind his move to Man United, Van de Beek mentioned how his move to the ‘fantastic club with the biggest competition in the world’ has helped him fulfil his coach’s dream. Van de Beek paid a tribute to Harm Grevink, calling him a wonderful man as the 23-year-old expressed his satisfaction knowing that the coach will be happy seeing him move to Man United.
While his move to Man United helped Van de Beek realise the dream of his coach, the number he has chosen at the club is also a mark of respect for a former teammate. Donny Van de Beek will wear the No.34 shirt at Man United. The number was previously worn by 'Appie' Nouri, his Ajax teammate who is in a coma after having suffered from a cardiac arrhythmia attack on the pitch three years ago.
Donny Van de Beek will be looking to make his Man United debut when Premier League fixtures begin this week. Manchester United will open their Premier League campaign against Crystal Palace at home on September 19. The club’s first round of Premier League fixtures had them scheduled to face Burnley. However, the fixture was postponed to give the club the required 30-day gap between seasons.