As a deal for Donny van de Beek looms, all focus is now on what Manchester United shirt number he’ll take.
Personally, I thought he’d be offered the number four that Phil Jones currently wears. However, it seems as though the Dutch midfielder wants to go down a different route.
The story comes from the Daily Mail, who state that Van de Beek is ‘likely’ to take the number 34 at Old Trafford – paying tribute to his former teammate, Abdelhak ‘Appie’ Nouri.
Nouri was left with permanent brain damage after collapsing on a football field aged just twenty a few years ago. Only this year was the midfielder allowed to be cared for at home, having woken from his coma.
Van de Beek is in regular contact with the Nouri family, while obviously being extremely close to Appie himself. After daily communication with the Nouri family, it’s likely the Dutchman will take the teammate of his good friend.
More than anything, it looks like United are not only getting an incredible player, but a wonderful human being too. Van de Beek oozes class both on and off the field and his mindset will certainly fit in well within that Old Trafford dressing room.
Former Manchester United number 34s
The list of players who have worn this jersey number in the past aren’t so well-known. You have former goalkeepers Anders Lindegaard and Sam Johnstone – with the former probably the most memorable.
Rodrigo Possebon (remember him!?), Phil Bardsley, Jonathan Greening and Tom Lawrence have all donned the 34 in their time. Simply put, Van de Beek, if he does in fact take this number, will be the most high-profile to ever wear that shirt.
It gives him a chance to make it into his own and forge his own United legacy. I’m also somewhat glad he isn’t taking an iconic Reds shirt number – as several players have struggled to live up to the hype over the last few years. Look at the number seven curse, for instance…