Norwich City transfer rumours: Canaries linked with Dutch centre back
- Credit: Archant
Norwich City have been linked with a move for Dutch centre back Sam Beukema.
The 22-year-old is currently playing for Go Ahead Eagles in the Eerste Divisie, catching the attentions of numerous clubs abroad with positive performances from defence. Beukema has played 28 times this season, netting on seven occasions.
Dutch outlet De Stentor are reporting that the Canaries are one of several clubs to display an interest in the former FC Twente youth product.
Beukema is a talented ball-playing centre back, and City have a good knowledge of the second tier in the Netherlands due to sending several of their young talents to SC Telstar.
The defender wouldn't currently qualify for a GBE, the points-based system that needs to be met for him to be eligible to play for City, but the Canaries could still sign him and then loan him out to an Eredivisie club until he meets the necessary requirements.
In the short term, Beukema is hungry to test himself at the highest level of football in his native country, with FC Utrecht, AZ Alkmaar and Feyenoord already making contact with the Go Ahead Eagles according to the report.
Speaking about his desire to play in the Dutch top-flight, the centre back told Voetbal International "I'm eager to learn and don't see a ceiling for myself."
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Bundesliga Champions League contenders Eintract Frankfurt have also been credited with an interest in Beukema, as well as Italian clubs Parma and Bologna.
Beukema is contracted to Deventer based club until 2023 and is the club's top scorer this season. They currently sit 5th in the Dutch second division.
City are expected to be without defender Ben Gibson for the remainder of the season, with his ankle injury feared to require surgery. The on-loan Burnley defender was stretched off after landing awkwardly during their draw with Blackburn last weekend.
That will see Christoph Zimmermann partner Grant Hanley in their back four as the Canaries seek to secure an instant return to the top-flight.
VERDICT: This one is a non-starter in the short term due to Beukema not qualifying for a work permit. The 22-year-old would be a good option for Championship clubs if the new Brexit red tape didn't prevent them from shopping in second division markets.
That said, the 22-year-old would be a low-risk high-reward addition if City did bring him in and opt to loan him out until he amasses the required amount of points to be eligible for a work permit.
He may have been one that City considered last summer due to Neil Adams' extensive knowledge of the Eerste Divisie, but doesn't seem to tick the necessary boxes to be an option, at least in the short term, for any Premier League survival bid.
Beukema is a known name to City's recruitment team, but the new set of regulations may make other players more viable.