In the run-up to the European Championships next summer, we will look at some of the players battling for a place in Frank de Boer’s squad. First up is Bologna midfielder Jerdy Schouten.

During the 2018/19 campaign, Schouten burst into the spotlight with some impressive performances in the midfield of Excelsior Rotterdam, during his first Eredivisie campaign. However, he could not prevent the club from being relegated after the playoffs.

A summer move back to the Eredivisie seemed likely but in July, the then 21-year-old, made a striking move to Serie A side Bologna, who had scouted Schouten extensively the year before and picked him up for a small fee.

Eighteen months later, Schouten is an undisputed starter in the midfield of the Serie A side, coached by Sinisa Mihajlovic, and one of the standout players outside the top sides.

The 23-year-old has started eleven times in Serie A this season, completing 90 minutes on nine of those occasions. The defensive midfielder’s stats are impressive, with Schouten completing 21/26 dribbles and 26/38 tackles, while intercepting the ball 31 times. In terms of dribbling and ball recovery, Schouten is one of the most impressive midfielders in the league.

In terms of passing, Schouten has completed 87.9% of all his passes and created nine chances in 11 games.

Schouten has developed rapidly over the last 18 months and is impressing in Serie A, much like Marten de Roon is with Atalanta Bergamo. It is expected that Schouten will eventually make the move to a bigger club in Italy with those at the top all keeping an eye on the Dutchman.

Another person keeping a keen eye on Schouten is Frank de Boer, with the Netherlands boss confirming that the midfielder is an option to him. Speaking to Voetbal International, De Boer said, “Like Sven Botman who is doing well at Lille. And in Bologna Jerdy Schouten is also developing very strongly. You pay extra attention to such players, they can be very interesting and we map them. A lot has already been fixed at Orange, but the places 17 to 23; that battle is completely open, as far as I’m concerned.”

De Boer also told De Telegraaf, “We follow Jerdy at Bologna very closely. He is doing very well in the Serie-A. I regularly see clips from Maarten Stekelenburg, my assistant. “

The battle for a midfield spot in the Oranje squad is fierce at the moment, with Teun Koopmeiners, Ryan Gravenberch, and Joey Veerman all knocking on the door from the Eredivisie. Then you have Jairo Riedewald, Davy Propper, Davy Klaassen, Kevin Strootman, Tonny Vilhena, and Leroy Fer who are all in the running too. Frenkie de Jong, Georginio Wijnaldum, Donny van de Beek, and Marten de Roon’s position in the squad seems untouchable.

However, Schouten has become an interesting option for De Boer and his performances in Serie A are demanding attention. If he keeps performing at a high level in Serie A then De Boer may give him a chance to prove himself. A call-up in the March internationals would not be a surprise at this moment.




Michael Bell (55 Posts)