Newly-appointed PSV Eindhoven coach Mark van Bommel could make Socceroo sensation Daniel Arzani one of his first signings.
There is intense interest swirling around Arzani, 19, in the Netherlands with PEC Zwolle - coached by his former Melbourne City mentor John van’t Schip - having made several previous enquiries.
AZ Alkmaar, the former home of Socceroos star Brett Holman, are also keen to lure Arzani to the Eredivisie.
Now sources close to van Bommel - currently riding shot-gun to father-in-law Bert van Marwijk with the Socceroos at the 2018 FIFA World Cup - claim he might have the inside running in race to bring Arzani to Europe.
With coach Philip Cocu departing for Fenerbahce after five years with the Dutch champions, van Bommel will be joined by van Marwijk in a role reversal next season.
Both have been deeply impressed with Arzani’s talent, blossoming maturity and ability to operate within a rigid team structure in working with the A-League wonderkid during the past month.
Arzani, who has a year left on his City contract, shimmered in a scintillating 22-minute cameo against Denmark on Thursday night (AEST), proving that the hype surrounding him has plenty of substance.
He confirmed last week that he would be looking to ink a move to Europe after the World Cup, with his Italian-based agent, former Socceroos enforcer Vince Grella, already likely to be exploring several potential scenarios.
PSV have won three of the last four Dutch titles and could provide a perfect platform for Arzani to cut his teeth in a league which has been graced by a legion of Australians over the years.
Van Bommel, 41, would dearly love first refusal on a player who is already almost as talked about in Dutch circles as he is back in his homeland.
Two years ago van’t Schip, when still with Melbourne City, strongly advised Dutch giant Ajax to take a punt on him and then teammate Aaron Mooy. But his entreaties fell on deaf ears.
Fellow breakthrough Socceroo Andrew Nabbout revealed the depth of the impact Arzani had already made in fleeting appearances against France, Denmark and the friendlies with the Czech Republic and Hungary, scoring against the latter.
“He’s exciting, isn’t he when he comes on,” Nabbout said.
“It’s a credit to him because a lot of 19-year-olds might go out there and freeze.
“He went out there (against Denmark) as if he was back in Australia playing.
“I love the kid, he’s so confident and it shows out on the pitch.”