Oussama Idrissi should think twice about leaving AZ Alkmaar for the Premier League with Wim Kieft making a Vincent Janssen comparison with the reported Everton and West Ham United target, speaking to De Telegraaf.
An explosive Moroccan international might have been one of the Eredivisie’s most influential attackers in 2019/20, transforming AZ into genuine title challengers before the season was curtailed in April – but brilliant form in Holland does not always count for much elsewhere.
It’s fair to say Eredivisie imports have a rather mixed record in English football, with Afonso Alves, Matija Kezman and Brighton’s £18 million record signing Alireza Jahanbahksh flopping on English soil.
And the less said about Janssen, a Golden Boot winner with AZ who scored twice in 31 league games for Tottenham Hotspur, the better.
So while Idrissi has made it clear that he wants to test himself away from Holland next season, telling Telegraaf that it would be ‘crazy’ if he didn’t want a big-money move, Kieft is keen to point out that the grass is not always greener elsewhere.
“He is a fun, attractive forward with good dribbling skills – but not a player that the top clubs in England, Germany, Spain and Italy are looking for. The boy knows that himself. He is not at the level of (AZ team-mates) Calvin Stengs or Myron Boadu,” 1998 European champion Kieft says.
“Are you going to develop at Brighton, Udinese, Hoffenheim or Eibar? Are you ready to play anyway?
“Just tell the honest story that after six years of Eredivisie you are ready for a new challenge, that you will be 25 years old and that you and your agent want to cash in. The money is good abroad, but there is hardly any prospect of success at a top club.
“See how other AZ attackers have fared, such as Vincent Janssen and Alireza Jahanbakhsh.”
Idrissi, an ever-improving winger who loves to cut inside onto his ruthless right foot, produced a career-best 17 goals and ten assists in all competitions last season.
But scoring stunners against ADO Den Haag and PEC Zwolle is one thing. Even the weakest clubs in the Premier League would represent a sizeable step-up in quality.
Calciomercato claimed in February that Everton and West Ham are interested.