Burnley boss Vincent Kompany reportedly closing in on summer target Ameen Al-Dakhil
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The former Belgium international reportedly contacted the 20-year-old personally regarding a move to Turf Moor.
The Clarets failed in their pursuit of the Baghdad-born defender in the summer before turning their attentions to Borussia Monchengladbach's Jordan Beyer.
However, according to Het Belang van Limburg, a Dutch language regional newspaper in Belgium, the player is ‘quietly on the brink of his dream transfer to Burnley'.
The ex-Standard Liège man, who was sent off in defeat to Kompany's Anderlecht in the Belgian Pro League last term, before featuring as a late substitute in the corresponding fixture at Constant Vanden Stock, spilled the beans at a press conference yesterday.
“In the summer, Kompany called me personally, but not in recent weeks,” he confessed.
“Whether I’m ready to leave? I hope so. It’s hard to estimate that beforehand, of course. I’m not too worried about it either. I play at STVV and can still learn every day here. That is what matters for a 20-year-old player."
Kompany has freed up space in his squad after Kevin Long ended a 13-year spell with the Clarets when joining Championship rivals Birmingham City while right back Matt Lowton was shipped out on loan to Huddersfield Town.
Al-Dakhil's potential switch could then pave the way for summer signing Luke McNally to find a temporary home for the remainder of the campaign in order to continue his development.
With the Clarets on course for an immediate return to the top flight, topping the division by a five-point margin over Sheffield United, and opening up a 14-point chasm over third place Blackburn Rovers, the move would be an attractive proposition for the Belgium Under 21 international.
Al-Dakhil continued: “I have my advantages. I am a big defender and have my speed. I have to exploit that in the future. As a young lad, I always dreamed of the Premier League, playing football for Manchester United. But I realise all too well that not many take that big step.
“I cannot estimate that (when his last game will be). I have deliberately asked my manager to keep the concrete info away from me as much as possible until things are really finalised.”
STVV boss Bernd Hollerbach, who made 197 appearances for Hamburger SV as a midfielder, described the his star man as a 'top player', whose form over the past 12 months has been 'sensational'.
“Ameen is a top player,” he said. “What Ameen has shown me in a year is sensational. He has a top character and a lot of quality. Al-Dakhil wants to learn every day. I think he's a top player. Why? If he has a bad day, he doesn't play at ten or twenty percent, but still at seventy percent.
"Those who can do that are top players for me. Of course there are still mistakes, but he already has a lot of maturity. If Ameen is smart enough not to chase after the money and to focus on his game, that top career will come naturally. Money will come later.”