Bengaluru FC, on Saturday, announced the signing of Dutch defender Keziah Veendorp, who put pen to paper on a two-year deal, set to run until the end of the 2024-25 campaign.
Veendorp, who most recently turned out for FC Emmen in the Eredivisie, is a product of the FC Groningen Academy and has represented the Netherlands at the U15, U17 and U19 levels.
“I’m really excited to join Bengaluru and I’m looking forward to joining the team, meeting the staff and my new teammates. I had a lot of options, but Bengaluru was the choice because I was keen on taking the next step, both in my career and in my life. My family and I have never been to India before, but all the stories I’ve heard have been great, especially those about the fans. I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to play for Bengaluru FC and to experience the atmosphere in the stadium,” said Veendorp, after the completion of formalities on his deal.
Veendorp, who made 174 appearances for Emmen across five seasons, was part of the Kannibals’ side that clinched promotion to the Eredivisie in 2018, with a win over Sparta Rotterdam in the playoff final.
After three years in the Eredivisie, Veendorp and Emmen dropped back to the Eerste Divisie for one season, before making their way back into the top flight following a fantastic run of results at De Oude Meerdijk in the 2021-22 campaign.
“Keziah is a versatile player who is equally comfortable in midfield and defence. He played at the highest level in Holland for a very long time, and is another character with a very good winning mentality, who was eager to come to our football club. We’re really looking forward to working with him, and I’m sure he’ll help us in many different departments this season,” said Blues’ boss Simon Grayson.
A Dutch youth international, Veendorp was called up to represent the Netherlands U17 against the Faroe Islands in October 2013, having earlier turned out for the U15s. The following year, he captained the Oranje squad that took part in the 2014 UEFA U17 European Championships, making five appearances as The Netherlands finished runners-up.
“We’re really glad to be able to bring in a player of Keziah’s profile and qualities to BFC. He really believes in the project at this football club, and was keen to contribute. At 26, he’s entering the prime of his career, and his numbers in the top division in Holland speak for itself. On behalf of Bengaluru FC, I want to welcome him to our family, and wish him the best for his time here,” said Blues’ Director of Football, Darren Caldeira.
Veendorp, who is set to travel to India following the completion of his VISA formalities, will team up with Grayson and his Blues in Bellary, where the club is conducting the first phase of its pre-season testing at the Inspire Institute of Sport. The fourth foreign signing of the season, Veendorp joins a squad that has already acquired the likes of Slavko Damjanovic, Ryan Williams and Curtis Main, in what has been a busy summer at Kanteerava.
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