United, Arsenal target to sign new contract - why it’s the right move

Belgian whizzkid Zakaria Bakkali looks set spurn a switch to the Premier League and extend his stay at PSV Eindhoven.

Young attacker Zakaria Bakkali has shot to almost immediate superstardom after a promising start to senior football in Holland.

The 17-year-old became the youngest player in Eredivisie history to score a hat-trick, netting three goals in only his second game for PSV this term.

As such, he has caught the eye of Premier League scouts, with Manchester United and Arsenal in particular the names linked with a move for the talented teenager.

However, reports in Belgian newspaper SportWereld are claiming that the youngster will turn down the opportunity to move to England for the time being, and is prepared to sign a new three-year deal with the Eredivisie outfit.

PSV’s technical manager Marcel Brands has admitted that the club is massively keen to keep the attacker on their books.

“Zakaria is satisfied with PSV and has indicated that he wants to continue to develop with us for the time being,” he said.

“We have received a positive signal and talks will be held at the end of this month”

The latest of a host of Belgian stars coming through the ranks, Bakkali has represented his country through the age grades, and has already forced his way into Marc Wilmots’ senior side.

Likened to compatriot Eden Hazard, the 17-year-old’s pace, trickery and eye for goal indicate that he is set to be a star of the future.

Despite the reported interest of the Premier League’s heavy hitters, a new deal with PSV is best for all parties.

It obviously suits his current employers, who will retain a top player and avoid losing him at a reduced price after nurturing the attacker through the youth ranks.

The Premier League suitors would most likely farm Bakkali out to another club to allow him first-team football anyway, and his development is best served in his current environment.

For the player himself, rushing off to England could well be a mistake, as he would be forced to play predominantly reserve football and would be putting his international hopes on hold as such.

He is best served staying with PSV for the time being, developing his game through regular action and proving his worth consistently over a couple of seasons before taking the plunge and moving to the Premier League.

image: © FaceMePLS

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