Brighton have reportedly agreed a deal to sign Dutch defender Jan Paul van Hecke from NAC Breda.
BN DeStem added [via The Argus] that Seagulls manager Graham Potter plans to send the youngster out on loan if Albion complete his signing, with Eredivisie side Utrecht believed to be the preferred destination.
Van Hecke enjoyed a promising breakthrough season at NAC Breda in 2019/20, scoring four goals in 16 appearances despite playing as a centre-back. Indeed, he found the net six times in nine games for their under-21 side, proving that he is remarkably prolific for a defender.
Brighton supporters may also be encouraged by a report from World Football Scouting which described the 20-year-old as a “strong and gritty character” who is regarded as “one of the darlings of NAC fans”.
If the Albion deal goes through, he will join compatriot Joel Veltman in arriving at the Amex Stadium to join a central defensive pool which also includes Lewis Dunk, Adam Webster, Shane Duffy and Leeds loan returnee Ben White, whom the Seagulls have insisted is not for sale amid substantial transfer interest.
Competition for centre-back places at Brighton is already intense, and with Van Hecke still quite raw having only played 16 senior games in his career, it seems unsurprising that Potter is reportedly planning to send him on loan if the Seagulls secure his signature.
Indeed, White had only played twice for Albion’s first team before they loaned him out to Leeds for last season, and he duly went on to play every single minute of their Championship-winning campaign under Marcelo Bielsa.
White is a prime example of how a loan spell away from Brighton can work wonders for a player’s career, and with such strong competition for centre-back places at the Amex, it’s little wonder that Van Hecke has been lined up for a loan move if he becomes a Seagulls player.
Do you expect Van Hecke to be loaned out by Brighton if he signs?
Also, if Brighton follow through on their reported plans to loan him to Utrecht, the Dutch youngster will enjoy another year in his homeland which should stand him in good stead ahead of trying to break into the Premier League side’s first team in the longer-term.
Brighton fans, do you think Van Hecke could be a shrewd long-term acquisition if the Seagulls complete a move for him? Join in the discussion by commenting below!
Click here to comment on this articleor
Give us feedback on your Football Transfer Tavern experience