Brighton close in on RSC Anderlecht’s Bart Verbruggen

Verbruggen would arrive at the AMEX on the back of being winning RSC Anderlecht’s player of the season award for 2022-23, and would likely offer immediate competition for Roberto Sánchez and Jason Steele.

Brighton’s penchant for finding talented young stars looks set to continue as the Seagulls are reportedly closing in on highly-rated Dutch youth international goalkeeper Bart Verbruggen.

The 20-year-old Breda-born shot-stopper is coming off an impressive 2022-23 campaign with Belgian giants RSC Anderlecht during a campaign that saw him come away with the club’s Player of the Season award on the back of 37 appearances across all competitions as Paars-wit’s clear number one.

Verbruggen’s development has also seen him receive recent consideration for the full Dutch national side under Ronald Koeman, though he is currently with the U21 side set to feature in European championships.

As such, the Seagulls have done well to fend off competition from Burnley for the Dutchman’s signature, as Clarets boss Vincent Kompany would have pushed to bring in a signing that he knows well during his time at Lotto Park as manager.

Brighton, who did so well to qualify for European football for the first time in its history in 2022-23, relied heavily on veteran shot-stopper Jason Steele down the back stretch, which has called into question the future of Roberto Sánchez.

Should a deal for Verbruggen be finalized as reported, the €20m (~£17m) signals the possibility that Verbruggen would immediately come into Roberto De Zerbi’s team with a real chance of taking control of the number one job at the AMEX, but at the very least, it shows once again that Brighton is in the business of developing talent that will also help push the club forward.

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Andrew Thompson

US-based Football writer. German football guru with a wealth of experience in youth development and analysis. Data aficionado. Happily championing the notion that Americans have a knowledgeable voice in the beautiful game.

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