July 15th 2023.
Former Manchester United goalkeeping coach Frans Hoek has advised Feyenoord star Justin Bijlow to stay in the Eredivisie for another season, even though the Premier League side is interested in signing him. Old Trafford is looking to bring in two new goalkeepers this summer, with David de Gea's departure and talks with Inter Milan over a deal for Andre Onana close to reaching a positive conclusion.
Reports in Netherlands have claimed that United's interest in Bijlow is for him to compete for the no1 spot alongside Onana. However, the 25-year-old Netherlands international has had injury issues in the past year, missing close to three months of action due to a broken wrist in February and then undergoing foot surgery in the last three months of the 21/22 season.
Hoek, who spent two years at Old Trafford during Louis van Gaal’s reign in charge, believes that Bijlow should stay with Feyenoord for another season before considering a move next summer. He said, “Justin is still developing. In fact, he has not yet played a full season, mainly due to injuries. If you miss a lot of matches, you also have to stand still in your development.”
He added, “I understand Justin is impatient, but it would be good if he stays with Feyenoord and hopefully stays injury-free. Feyenoord was often the underdog, but now they enter every match as the favourite and play in the Champions League. Those are great challenges for a keeper. Now he can actually show where he is at the moment. If Justin goes through that develop, the chance is great that he will make a fantastic transfer after this season.”
Bijlow has been diplomatic about the situation. When asked about United's interest, he said with a smile, “We’ll see. But out of respect for Feyenoord, I don’t want to talk about other clubs.” This suggests that he would “love” to make the move to United but will not force a transfer and will continue to act professionally.
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