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Donny van de Beek has revealed a key factor in his move to Manchester United was the fact he would fulfil the dream of his dying former coach.
Harm Grevink, now 73, first discovered Van de Beek as a youngster for Veensche Boys and was a hugely influential figure for the Netherlands international.
It was his Grevink's dream to see Van de Beek ply his trade for one of the biggest clubs in Europe but unfortunately he has been diagnosed with cancer and hasn't got long to live.
A mooted Real Madrid move collapsed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, however Van de Beek is happy knowing that Grevink has lived to see him sign for 13-time Premier League winners United.
"Harm was the man who spotted my talent as a kid," he said, as per The Mirror.
"He told me I had the talent to become a professional player and he took me to Ajax. Whenever I was away from the club, we were training skills and all sorts. He was like a private coach.
"Sadly now he is dying - but he had one dream for me. He wanted to live to see my transfer to a big club, the next big stage in my career.
"We thought it was going to be Real Madrid. That did not work out, for various different reasons. Now I have joined an absolutely fantastic club in the biggest competition in the world.
"The fact that Harm knows that I am now a Manchester United player, among all those other great players at Old Trafford, fills me with joy. Because Harm is a wonderful man."
There's extra emotion for Van de Beek moving to Old Trafford because of his close friend 'Appie' Nouri, his former Ajax teammate who suffered a cardiac arrhythmia attack on the pitch three years ago and has been in a coma ever since.
He has honoured Nouri by taking the No.34 at United and the player's father, Mohammed, revealed his beautiful reaction to Van de Beek telling him about his big £40 million move.
Donny van de Beek is the latest player to take the No. 34 shirt as a tribute to Appie Nouri :heart: pic.twitter.com/BvUSZ4Dcgo- B/R Football (@brfootball) September 2, 2020
"Donny is like a son to us. Everyone at our house was very emotional, happy with Donny's wonderful transfer. It was a special day."
"We will definitely go to Manchester. The three of us won't all go together because Appie needs help, so someone must always stay with him."
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