Former Ajax and Man Utd boss Louis van Gaal has expressed his opinion that Chelsea have landed a ‘special player’ in Hakim Ziyech.
As noted by the club’s official site back in February, it was officially announced that the Ajax playmaker had agreed personal terms with the Blues and that he was set to join the Premier League giants this summer.
Further, it’s specifically noted how the club announced earlier in the month that a deal had been agreed with the Dutch giants over a transfer, and so while it remains unclear when he will join up with his new teammates given the current campaign has yet to be completed due to the delay caused by the coronavirus pandemic, it’s all confirmed that the 27-year-old will move to west London ahead of next season.
Ziyech has enjoyed a stellar stint with Ajax, scoring 48 goals and providing 82 assists in 165 appearances for the club, and Van Gaal has noted his belief that the Morocco international is a special player as he has combined his goals, assists and his creativity with a superb work ethic.
“He has developed tremendously at Ajax. Not so much in creativity, but as a team player,” he told NOS, as quoted by the Metro. “The public have realised that he works very hard for a creative player. And then he also scores goals and gives assists. Then you are a special player.”
Given Van Gaal’s ties with Ajax and his knowledge of the club and their players, Chelsea fans will undoubtedly be delighted with that assessment as they anticipate seeing Ziyech in action for the first time next season.
With doubts remaining over the likes of Pedro and Willian as their respective contracts will expire this summer, Frank Lampard has undoubtedly landed a top-class player to help fill that potential void in the final third, and Van Gaal’s comments seemingly reinforce the belief that Ziyech will be a crucial player for Chelsea moving forward.
Many fans will have seen what he’s capable of offering for Ajax in the Champions League over the past two seasons, but Van Gaal makes a great point about another aspect of his game that perhaps doesn’t get as much attention as he’ll offer a key presence in both phases.