The Red Devils, De Roeck and the Turkish connection: why Nacer Chadli is signing with Westerlo for two years

After Antwerp (Toby Alderweireld), Anderlecht (Jan Vertonghen) and Club Brugge (Dedryck Boyata), Westerlo has now also been able to secure an (ex) Red Devil on the transfer market. Nacer Chadli travels to Belgium tomorrow, in the Kuipje a contract for two seasons is ready.

A little stunt. That is the least you can call the imminent transfer of Nacer Chadli to Westerlo. The 33-year-old from Liège was still too expensive for Anderlecht two years ago and then exchanged AS Monaco for the Turkish Basaksehir. After his passage with the Belgian record champion, he now opts for a second Belgian adventure in the Kempen. Charleroi also showed interest, but is fishing behind the net. Chadli will board the plane tomorrow and can sign a contract for two seasons after the physical and medical tests.

It is not known how much Westerlo will pay for Chadli, who is still under contract in Istanbul for one year. The fact that the Turkish directors of Westerlo maintain a good relationship with Basaksehir will undoubtedly have helped to come to an interesting deal. After the qualification for the Conference League on the field of Antwerp, the chairman of the Turkish club paid a visit to the Kuipje, earlier this summer Westerlo and defender Ravil Tagir already picked up a player from Basaksehir. The presence of Jonas De Roeck, who still knows him from his time at Anderlecht, also played a role in Chadli’s choice.

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After the injuries of strong holders Daci, Bernat and Van Eenoo, reinforcement of the Western core was desperately needed. The 66-times Red Devil must also provide more experience in Jonas De Roeck’s team. “We still lack some maturity and have to adapt to 1A”, said the Kempen coach before the defeat at the Bosuil. An extra asset: Chadli only played once for Basaksehir this season, but immediately showed that he has not forgotten about scoring. In the game against Kayserispor, he opened the scoring with his head after 62 minutes.

Western World Cup-goer?

The move to Westerlo could also be an opportunity for Chadli. His last international match dates from the quarterfinals at the European Championship against Italy, but at the beginning of this month national coach Roberto Martinez opened the door for a World Cup ticket wide. “Chadli is still on my A-list,” it sounded then. The chance that he will get enough playing minutes to show himself is slightly greater in Westerlo than at Basaksehir, where, despite 51 appearances in two seasons, he never made it to a fixed value.

READ ALSO. With Leander Dendoncker there, 18 Red Devils now have a new club: with a view to the World Cup, that is not bad news

A Red Devil at Westerlo? It wouldn’t be unique. At the end of the last century, Toni Brogno was called up to the national team by Georges Leekens. As a player for Westerlo, he would collect seven caps. He did not score a single goal in 111 minutes. Chadli could become the first player from Westerlo to go to a World Cup or European Championship. Brogno was in the pre-selection of 24 players in 2000, but was one of the last two dropouts for the European Championship in his own country.

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