Ajax attacking midfielder Hakim Ziyech has listed some of his heroes as his confirmed move to Stamford Bridge approaches. Amongst these legends are retired Arsenal stars Thierry Henry and Dennis Bergkamp.
Bergkamp is a cult hero at the Emirates with 87 goals and 94 assists in 315 appearances for the North London club. Meanwhile, Henry was arguably the main man of the 2003-2004 Arsenal Invincibles – he scored 30 goals in that season. Overall, Henry scored an astounding 175 goals in 258 Premier League appearances. It is no wonder that Ziyech looked up to these Gunners greats, both of whom are frequently included in the debate over who is the best Premier League player ever.
On his upcoming move to Chelsea, Ziyech recently told Voetbal International, as translated by Goal: “The Premier League is a great competition, especially because of the fast-thinking, technical players.
“As a kid, I’ve always dreamed about this. I watched the games Chelsea, Arsenal and Man Utd played and players like Didier Drogba, Thierry Henry, Dennis Bergkamp and David Beckham, you name them. I want the same thing.”
A £33.3m signing, according to BBC Sport, Ziyech has impressed for last season’s Eredivisie champions for many seasons. With 18 assists in all competitions this season, Chelsea fans are sure to be excited by this signing. It was announced in February and is seemingly wonderful business financially, considering the money being spent on players nowadays.
The Moroccan international said Chelsea manager Frank Lampard convinced him that the move was right for him.
Ziyech added: “Now, everything feels right. Chelsea is a very big and nice club. There are a lot of talented youngsters, which puts me in a position I’m used to after the last three-and-a-half years at Ajax. It suits me well.
“Chelsea has a coach who loves attacking and attractive football in Frank Lampard. I feel the same way. We had some good talks. Lampard is really calm and presented himself well.
“We immediately felt a connection, which also convinced me to make this decision.
“Therefore, now is the time to make a move. I’m ready, also as a person. It will be a new phase of my life to be further away from my family and friends in London. I don’t see it as a struggle, quite the opposite actually.
“I’m really looking forward to it. I will give it my utmost and will learn so many new things that will make me grow even further.”
The 27-year-old is due to join Chelsea on July 1, however this date seems improbable and will most likely be pushed back, due to the Coronavirus pandemic.