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Done Deal: Watford confirm the signing of Marvin Zeegelaar from Sporting Lisbon



Marvin Zeegelaar

Despite having an extremely productive time in the summer transfer window to date, Watford manager Marco Silva had been desperately looking to build on his eleven signings late on deadline day.

The Portuguese boss was particularly looking for a left-back and, after seeing a deal for Arsenal defender Kieran Gibbs fall short, Silva has managed to secure the signing of Sporting Lisbon’s Marvin Zeegelaar.

Who is Marvin Zeegelaar?

Marco Silva has certainly racked his footballing brains and stretched to the depths of his knowledge to secure Watford’s deadline day arrivals of goalkeeper Orestis Karnezis and now Marvin Zeegelaar.

The 27-year-old Dutchman has enjoyed a fairly exotic playing career since impressively coming through the Ajax youth system at 16 years of age, having spells in Spain, Turkey, Portugal and even England.

This came during the 2013 season when he had a highly unsuccessful loan spell at Blackpool, who were playing in the Championship at the time, and across the course of the season he only played two games.

Fortunately for Watford fans his career has taken off since the last time he played in England, earning a move to Portuguese top-flight side Rio Ave in 2014 and putting in some consistent displays during his two years there – so much so that it earnt him a move to esteemed outfit Sporting Lisbon a season later.

Somewhat ironically Zeegelaar joined Sporting just months after Silva left for fellow Primeira Liga side Estoril, but it’s clear to see that the 27-year-old left a lasting impression on the current Watford manager.

What is the deal?

Watford’s official website confirmed the completion of the deal shortly after 6pm on Thursday evening, with Zeegelaar arriving at the club on a four-year deal in a deal believed – by The Sun – to cost £3 million.

Where would Zeegelaar fit in at Vicarage Road?

Silva has been adamant at the need to strengthen his options on the left side of defence and, to his credit, he’s kept true to his word and captured the signing of out-and-out Dutch left-back Zeegelaar.

The fact that the duo have the previous link of Sporting Lisbon should allow him to settle into Vicarage Road well, and Watford fans will hope he can adapt to the Premier League’s tempo fast and kick-on.

The Dutchman is very comfortable on the ball, having a tendency to push forward down the left-hand side when given licence to roam, and he’s managed to develop himself into a strong dribbler as well.

Jose Holebas has been utilised as Watford’s first-choice left-back for the beginning of the season yet it remains to be seen as to whether Zeegelaar will come into the squad as competition or as a back-up.

Will is a Multimedia Journalism graduate from the University of Salford, specialising in the art of sports. Long-time suffering Northampton Town fan who once saw us win a league title. Find him on Twitter - @96PearsonW.

English Premier League

Liverpool round up: Jurgen Klopp to step up Shaqiri interest, Reds priced out of Alisson deal

The latest news and gossip surrounding Liverpool

Jamie Watts



Photo: Getty Images

Shaqiri move on hold

Liverpool will step up their pursuit of Stoke City maestro Xherdan Shaqiri when he returns from the World Cup with Switzerland, after receiving early encouragement in sorting a deal, according to reports from the Mirror.

Shaqiri is said to be keen on a move to Merseyside, and a deal is more than likely to materialise, with Liverpool unlikely to find discrepancies over the reported fee of £12 million for the recently relegated star.

The 26-year-old is not considered as an alternative to Nabil Fekir, after a deal for the Lyon forward collapsed last week (BBC Sport) and the club are considering revisiting negotiations once the player returns from international duties.

Photo: Getty Images

Allison off the table

Liverpool are unlikely to make an approach for Roma goalkeeper Alisson, having been put off by Brazilian international’s reported £80 million valuation, according to Sky Sports.

The Reds have been linked with Alisson consistently throughout the January window, and it was thought they would go big for his services this summer. However, it appears Roma are in no need to sell and will require big money to part ways with the 25-year-old.

Jurgen Klopp is said to be considering moving for Chelsea shot-stopper Thibaut Courtois – as he enters the final year of his deal – but the Blues would likely demand a big fee also, as Liverpool having backed themselves with their goalkeeper situation, following Lloris Karius’ nightmare final.

Photo: Getty Images

Origi eyes return

Divock Origi has suggested a return to Anfield is best for his development and is eyeing a place in the first-team squad after a successful pre-season, according to the Liverpool Echo.

The 23-year-old had been loaned to Bundesliga outfit Wolfsburg, but has suffered a relatively meagre campaign, netting just seven goals in 36 appearances, as the team flirted with relegation from the German top-tier.

He will now return to Melwood next month, but whether Klopp has plans for him or not remains to be seen.

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English Premier League

Newcastle should forget Rondon and give Mitrovic another shot

Rafa Benitez is looking to secure a striker this summer, but should Newcastle put more faith in returning loanee?

Jamie Watts



Newcastle United are reportedly in the market for new forwards this summer, with Rafa Benitez identifying the Magpies’ attacking output as a key weakness last term, despite their impressive 10th place finish.

The Spaniard is allegedly keen on Venezuela international Salomon Rondon and could offer him a route back into the Premier League, from the recently relegated West Brom, according to the Northern Echo.

However, the 28-year-old may not be the best option to spearhead the side at St James’ Park.

Rondon has failed to bag more than 10 goals in a domestic season since arriving from Zenit St Petersburg, while his 28 strikes in 120 games makes for pretty poor reading. It goes without saying stats are not everything, but Newcastle will need a reliable scorer to ensure safety, and perhaps he is not worth the risk.

Photo: Getty Images

Strangely, Benitez seems reluctant to recall former fan favourite Aleksandar Mitrovic despite his recent resurgence, and is pursuing other targets that employ a similar game to the Serbian.

On loan in the Championship last term Mitrovic regained his confidence and eye for goal, and he was pivotal in Fulham’s  push for promotion, netting an impressive 12 goals in 11 games for the Cottagers in a period he described as “the best four months of my career”.

The former Anderlecht man seems to have curbed his disciplinary issues and simplified his game up top, with his link-up play representing some of the finest in world football last term. And the time could be perfect for his return to Tyneside.

Photo: Getty Images

It is evident from rumours surrounding Rondon and Sporting Lisbon talisman Bas Dost (the Sun), that Benitez is actively seeking a physical linchpin to orchestrate play in the final third and Mitrovic could be his best option.

Newcastle are not famed for their spending in transfer markets and they have a ready-made solution returning to the club imminently. Benitez should reevaluate his current pursuits and give Mitrovic one last chance. On last season’s evidence, the results could be brilliant.

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English Premier League

Cenk Tosun could become an elite striker under Marco Silva next term

Everton’s star talisman could benefit massively from Marco Silva’s regime at Goodison Park.

Jamie Watts



Everton‘s star striker Cenk Tosun recently vowed to reach new levels and is convinced he can be even better next season, after impressing in his debut campaign in a shackled Toffees side, in quotes via the official club website.

And the Turkish international will be thrilled by the appointment of Marco Silva, as he will likely be spearheading a far more progressive and attacking team next term.

The highly-rated forward netted an impressive five goals in only 12 starts for Sam Allardyce’s side, after joining from Turkish giants Besiktas in the winter window and helping Everton to reach a comfortable eighth-place finish in the process.

Photo: Getty Images

Known for his clinical edge in front of goal, the Turk did not disappoint, boasting an impressive 42 per cent accuracy rating for shots-on-target, bettering the likes of Tottenham‘s Harry Kane on 41 per cent.

However, his output was limited by Allardyce’s pragmatic style, with the striker often feeding on scraps in attacking areas, and he undoubtedly has higher levels to hit if Silva can accommodate the 27-year-old properly and surround him with like-minded attacking players.

The recent names circulating in the Everton rumour mill certainly suggest Tosun’s supply line will be richer after the summer, with the likes of Sporting Lisbon’s Gelson Martins and Bas Dost being touted as potential arrivals (A Bola).

Photo: Getty Images

The new Everton manager is sure to see Tosun as a vital member of his squad going forward, as the club aim to see results for their £27 million investment. While owner Farhad Moshiri’s ambitions of European football at Goodison Park dovetail with the Turkish international’s Champions League pedigree.

Considering the numbers Tosun managed under Allardyce, there is no telling how many goals he could bag under the tutelage of Silva in an attack-minded outfit. And many could be surprised at his impact next season.

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