In this series Nick Harris looks at some of the young players who may be the biggest new stars of 2013. Tottenham target Adam Maher is the subject of this article, with the youngster voted the Dutch young player of the year last season.
Adam Maher is a name who is becoming increasingly familiar to English fans, with plenty of top Premiership clubs keeping tabs on the AZ Alkmaar player. Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City have all been linked with Maher in the past, and with the Dutch midfielder continuing to impress in the Eredivisie, he could be set for a big move at some stage next year.
Maher already has two Dutch caps to his name, and almost forced himself into the Euro 2012 squad in the summer. Having played a full season will AZ Alkmaar, he is not as raw as some of the other players in this series, but given his talent, you could expect him to become far more well known next year on both the domestic and international stage.
The 19 year old joined Alkmaar when he was just 11, and worked his way through their youth ranks until making his senior debut in December 2010, scoring a goal in a UEFA Cup match against BATE Borisov when he was just 17. Since then he has featured regularly for Alkmaar, but may now be open to stepping up a level to one of Europe’s top clubs.
Maher has been compared to Wesley Sneijder, as an attacking midfielder comfortable creating chances for teammates or scoring goals himself. He is also a proficient dribbler and possesses all of the technical attributes you would expect of a player brought through a Dutch youth system. As a result, he is coveted by the biggest team’s around Europe, with a potential £12 million being touted in the papers.
Alkmaar are currently unlikely to qualify for European football next season, and for Maher to breakthrough as a household name next season, he will probably need to more on. Wherever he goes you’d expect him to shine, and if he continues to gain international caps under Louis van Gaal he will be a player everyone will be familiar with by next winter.
image: © richardofengland