Report: Celtic in hunt for 20-year-old Dutch defender Milan van Ewijk
Celtic are looking at ADO Den Haag defender Milan van Ewijk, according to Dutch reports.
The outlet VI have claimed that the Bhoys join a host of European clubs in chasing the 20-year-old. van Ewijk, formerly of the Feyenoord youth academy, has made 24 Eredivisie appearances for the league’s second-bottom club.
“Schalke 04, Hamburger SV and SV Darmstadt have been following Van Ewijk’s performance from Germany for some time, while the Scottish Celtic and the Belgian KAA Gent have recently also expressed their interest.”
The Den Haag right-back, who can also play in central defence, has a contract with the Hague-based club until 2022. With speculation mounting, it seems clear that van Ewijk will not see out the duration of that deal.
Valued at £450,000 by Transfermarkt, the right-back is a strong crosser of the ball, proficient in the tackle and covers a lot of ground for the Dutch side.
For Celtic, Milan van Ewijk fills vital squad role
Milan van Ewijk’s versatility means he’s not just a capable full-back. With coaching, the Dutch youngster could easily perform on the right side of a back 3, which provides options for the next Celtic manager.
The Bhoys, along with Gent, offer the most serious possibility of European football. While the Bundesliga holds allure, van Ewijk surely wants to test himself against the continent’s best players. With Schalke or Hamburg, that option is not available.
The Dutchman’s statistics are noteworthy. van Ewijk averages 3.3 tackles and 1.8 interceptions, with less than 1 foul per 90. His passing needs work, with a success rate of 73.7% a match, but his dribbling and defensive nous mean he’s an exciting prospect [WhoScored?]. At 20, the only real obstacles are a work permit and his willingness to relocate.
Inevitably, there will be Virgil van Dijk comparisons, but the Amsterdam born Den Haag star is a totally different kind of player. At 5’7″, he is a pacy, roaming full-back as opposed to an ball-playing stopper in the middle of the defence.
At a cut price, with a year left on his contract, this rumour could be one to watch.