Ronald Koeman should consider AZ Alkmaar’s Tijjani Reijnders according to Hans Kraay Jr

With the dust settling over the 2022 World Cup campaign for Netherlands, attention has already turned towards how incoming coach Ronald Koeman should improve Oranje with a young AZ Alkmaar footballer, according to ESPN presenter Hans Kraay Jr.

The former Dutch footballer said Koeman should turn his attention to 24-year-old midfielder Tijjani Reijnders when the head coach takes over from Louis van Gaal in January.

Speaking on ESPN program WK Praat, Kraay believes Reijnders will improve the midfield and would compliment Frenkie de Jong on international duty because what the Barcelona player has at the moment is not good enough.

“Frenkie de Jong should get a fresh midfielder next to him,” he said. “Because Marten de Roon, Teun Koopmeiners and Steven Berghuis can’t do it at that level.” 

At the World Cup, Louis van Gaal rotated with his midfield. While Berghuis started next to De Jong in the first group match against Senegal, he then had to give up his starting place to Koopmeiners and De Roon.

“My first choice is Reijnders,” continues Kraay. “I mean: go and follow him very intensively for five games. He will not play less than De Roon or Koopmeiners right in control, will he?” Kenneth Perez steps on the brakes. “Reijnders has done well, but playing football at AZ and having to become decisive in the Dutch national team. That is quite a difference.”

Reijnders is yet to his senior debut for the Dutch national team but has picked up three caps at U20-level in 2018 and 2019.

GBeNeFN | Tom Phillips

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