Passing the ball can sometimes look like the easiest thing in the world to do. At least, it does when these guys do it.

Our latest dive into the data of 2019-20 sees us look at the best playmakers in Europe's top-five leagues before the season was called to a halt.

We've deliberately broadened our approach to what constitutes a playmaker here – Gerard Pique doesn't often appear as a number 10, unless Barca are in real trouble – as the idea is to offer a wider consideration of those players who generally use the ball better than most when in possession.

To that end, we've looked at 12 different metrics to come up with the top performers of the campaign, again from among those to make at least 10 league appearances.

While some stars are not exactly strange to see in the list below, there is a handful of more surprising names, too...

 

THE TOP PLAYMAKERS IN EUROPE'S TOP-FIVE LEAGUES 2019-20:

BUNDESLIGA:

Most successful passes: Sven Bender (1,766)
Highest passing accuracy: Axel Witsel (94.1 per cent)
Most successful passes, opposition half: Joshua Kimmich (873)
Highest passing accuracy, opposition half: Axel Witsel (92.2)
Most passes ending in final third: Jadon Sancho (576)
Highest passing accuracy ending in final third: Axel Witsel (88.4 per cent)
Most chances created: Christopher Nkunku (65)
Most big chances created: Thomas Muller (24)
Most assists: Thomas Muller (16)
Most assists from open play: Thomas Muller (15)
Most crosses/corners successful: Filip Kostic (71)
Highest crosses/corners accuracy (min. 10): Dennis Geiger (50 per cent)

LALIGA:

Most successful passes: Gerard Pique (1,688)
Highest passing accuracy: Toni Kroos (93.6 per cent)
Most successful passes, opposition half: Sergio Busquets (957)
Highest passing accuracy, opposition half: Toni Kroos (92.4)
Most passes ending in final third: Lionel Messi (698)
Highest passing accuracy ending in final third: Toni Kroos (90.3)
Most chances created: Jose Campana (58)
Most big chances created: Lionel Messi (22)
Most assists: Lionel Messi (12)
Most assists from open play: Portu and Lionel Messi (8)
Most crosses/corners successful: Jesus Navas (43)
Highest crosses/corners accuracy (min. 10): Benat (55 per cent)

LIGUE 1:

Most successful passes: Marco Verratti (1,581)
Highest passing accuracy: Thiago Silva (95.5 per cent)
Most successful passes, opposition half: Marco Verratti (956)
Highest passing accuracy, opposition half: Thiago Silva (92.8 per cent)
Most passes ending in final third: Angel Di Maria (543)
Highest passing accuracy ending in final third: Colin Dagba (86 per cent)
Most chances created: Dimitri Payet (87)
Most big chances created: Angel Di Maria (31)
Most assists: Angel Di Maria (14)
Most assists from open play: Angel Di Maria (10)
Most crosses/corners successful: Dimitri Payet (63)
Highest crosses/corners accuracy (min. 10): Marco Verratti (54.6 per cent)

 

PREMIER LEAGUE:

Most successful passes: Virgil van Dijk (2,209)
Highest passing accuracy: John Stones (94 per cent)
Most successful passes, opposition half: Rodri (1,069)
Highest passing accuracy, opposition half: John Stones (93.9 per cent)
Most passes ending in final third: Kevin De Bruyne (740)
Highest passing accuracy ending in final third: Ibrahim Amadou (93.3 per cent)
Most chances created: Kevin De Bruyne (96)
Most big chances created: Kevin De Bruyne (23)
Most assists: Kevin De Bruyne (16)
Most assists from open play: Kevin De Bruyne (14)
Most crosses/corners successful: Kevin De Bruyne (69)
Highest crosses/corners accuracy (min. 10): Christian Atsu (47.1 per cent)

 

SERIE A:

Most successful passes: Fabian Ruiz (1,488)
Highest passing accuracy: Marlon Santos (94.1 per cent)
Most successful passes, opposition half: Fabian Ruiz (932)
Passing accuracy, opposition half: Eljif Elmas (91.5 per cent)
Most passes ending in final third: Luis Alberto (723)
Highest passing accuracy ending in final third: Walace (89.7 per cent)
Most chances created: Luis Alberto (75)
Most big chances created: Luis Alberto (16)
Most assists: Luis Alberto (12)
Most assists from open play: Luis Alberto and Alejandro Gomez (9)
Most crosses/corners successful: Erick Pulgar (46)
Highest crosses/corners accuracy (min. 10): Armando Izzo (54.6 per cent)

 

AND THE TOP 12:

Most successful passes: Virgil van Dijk (2,209)
Highest passing accuracy: Thiago Silva (95.5 per cent)
Most successful passes, opposition half: Rodri (1,069)
Passing accuracy, opposition half: John Stones (93.9 per cent)
Most passes ending in final third: Kevin De Bruyne (740)
Highest passing accuracy ending in final third: Ibrahim Amadou (93.3 per cent)
Most chances created: Kevin De Bruyne (96)
Most big chances created: Angel Di Maria (31)
Most assists: Thomas Muller and Kevin De Bruyne (16)
Most assists from open play: Thomas Muller (15)
Most crosses/corners successful: Filip Kostic (71)
Highest crosses/corners accuracy (min. 10): Benat (55 per cent)

 

Harry Kane and Jack Grealish would be welcome additions at Manchester United according to Mark Bosnich, who feels his former club are moving in the right direction under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

United were on an 11-match unbeaten run in all competitions when the COVID-19 crisis brought a halt to much of competitive football globally.

As such, when the close season arrives, any Old Trafford overhaul might not be as drastic as first imagined.

Nevertheless, ex-Australia goalkeeper Bosnich told Stats Perform a high-end addition in attack would be ideal, even though he acknowledges a high asking price and Tottenham's notorious hard-ball tactics in the transfer market could make acquiring Kane a tough ask.

"I think they need another striker, another big attacking player," he said.

"What the run and improvement has done is bought Manchester United time and put them a little bit more in a position of strength.

"I'd be looking for a striker to complete that spine. You're thinking Bruno Fernandes, Harry Maguire, David De Gea... Marcus Rashford you could have probably added to that but with the injury and so forth you're considering someone who can help him lead the line. A big signing up in the middle.

"Harry Kane would be absolutely fantastic for Manchester United. Whether or not Tottenham would let him go, I don't know, and the price tag they were talking about [a reported £200million] I thought was ridiculous.

"But definitely somebody of that ilk. Harry Kane has been one of the best strikers of his generation, not just in England, across the world. That would be a fantastic coup."

Bosnich made the switch from Aston Villa to United in 2001, having previously played for the club from 1989 to 1991, while Dwight Yorke made the same move in 1998 in a deal that proved pivotal to the Red Devils' treble triumph.

Current Villa Park favourite Jack Grealish has been touted for a similar move and, were United to firm up any interest in the playmaker, it is a situation that would understandably leave Bosnich with mixed emotions.

"I'd be happy for him – from an Aston Villa perspective, no; from a Manchester United perspective, yes," he said.

"I’d be delighted for him if he went. His performances have been outstanding.

"I was so impressed [in 2018] when they lost to Fulham at Wembley in the Championship play-off final. He could have left then and had every right to, but fact that he stayed to help Villa get up really, really impressed me."

Villa are second bottom in the Premier League, two points from safety with 10 games of the suspended season remaining, and Bosnich feels the Birmingham club's fate in that regard remains the prime factor looming over Grealish's future.

"If it happened again and Villa were to go down, he's entitled to leave after staying and doing what he did. He's done a brilliant job for Aston Villa," he added.

"I'm sure the vast majority of supporters would like him to stay but if a player has had his head turned and doesn't want to be there you get the best possible price and go and replace him.

"But the key thing to focus on now for [head coach] Dean Smith, [assistant] John Terry and Jack Grealish is to keep Aston Villa up."

Paul Pogba has been backed to remain at Manchester United by Mark Bosnich, who believes the midfielder could thrive in partnership with Bruno Fernandes.

Pogba has been restricted to just eight appearances in all competitions during an injury-plagued 2019-20, while rumours persist of an end-of-season exit from Old Trafford.

Real Madrid and former club Juventus have been tipped to make a move for the France international, yet ex-United goalkeeper Bosnich can see the player staying put.

"If I had to put money on it right now, I think he will stay, I really do," he told Stats Perform.

"If you've got a player in the dressing room, regardless of whether it's Paul Pogba or Paul Smith, you let them go in the most amicable way possible.

"There's no use carrying someone who doesn't want to be in your club because it affects their performance and it can start to affect the performances of people around them."

Pogba is closing in on a comeback but it may be further delayed by the coronavirus-enforced shutdown of Europe's top competitions, with no return date in sight for the Premier League.

United had gone 11 matches without defeat before the season was halted, their upturn in form credited to the arrival of January signing Fernandes.

And Bosnich suggested Pogba will be walking into a different side to the one he last played in.

"There's no doubting [Pogba is] a world-class player," he said. "I watched him live at the World Cup in 2018 and I thought he was phenomenal.

"With the arrival of Fernandes and the team winning and playing well, it makes a huge difference.

"If he (Pogba) can come back and play to his full potential, that is fantastic news - not only for him and Fernandes but for Manchester United and all their supporters."

Fernandes has hit the ground running with three goals and four assists for United in his first nine appearances, earning praise from Bosnich.

"He's a superb signing. Anyone who had followed him at Sporting would have seen what a top player he was," he said. "Even if you didn't watch that many games in Portugal, you looked at the stats - his goals and assists.

"I don't think anyone in their wildest dreams imagined he would settle so quickly. But it's great for him, great for the club and great for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.

"I'm really happy for the player and for the club and really looking forward to them coming back."

Steven Gerrard has hailed "role model" Jordan Henderson for his part in organising a charity fund to help health services in the United Kingdom during the coronavirus pandemic.

The Liverpool captain has been widely credited for taking a lead role in launching the #PlayersTogether initiative that will see Premier League players donate funds to NHS charities.

Henderson's leadership qualities have also been clear to see on the field since succeeding Gerrard as skipper in 2015, none more so than this term prior to the coronavirus-enforced shutdown.

And Gerrard, who played alongside Henderson for four seasons, has praised the 29-year-old for growing in stature during his time at Anfield.

"I remember he came into Liverpool as a shy lad from Sunderland and his family asked me to keep an eye on him and look after him," he told Sky Sports' The Football Show.

"He's a very selfless person, on and off the pitch. He was a dream to play with because of his energy. I'm certainly one who's always sung his praises because I appreciate the job he did in the team.

"I think he's got better and better from a football point of view but, as a person, I think what he's done over the last couple of weeks sums the human being up.

"He's a fantastic man and he's become a top-class midfielder. Everything he earns in the game and every accolade he gets he absolutely deserves it. He's a role model to a lot of young kids."

Henderson lifted the Champions League trophy last season and has helped Liverpool to open up a 25-point lead at the top of the Premier League this term.

Iconic midfielder Gerrard puts his former club's recent success down to their mental strength and has backed them to continue winning silverware.

"They've been phenomenal for a few years now. I thought they were very unlucky last year not to be champions - that was down to how good Manchester City were," he said.

"They just seem to be getting better and stronger every single year. The one key thing that's blown me away from when I played is their mental strength across the board.

"We used to have some really good professionals and mentally strong players in our squad, but it seems like from number one in the squad to number 26 they're all monsters and all on the same page.

"To have a squad that all has that mentality, I'm really excited to watch them in the coming years as well because they've got a fantastic opportunity to become a very successful Liverpool team."

Leroy Sane's move to Bayern Munich appears back on, while Real Madrid are chasing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Sane was linked with a switch to Bayern last close-season but ended up staying at Manchester City.

It appears that move could be back on, while Madrid are maintaining interest in Arsenal star Aubameyang.

 

TOP STORY – SANE IN FRESH BAYERN TALKS

Sane's new agent is in fresh talks with Bayern Munich, according to The Sun.

The Germany attacker was the subject of transfer speculation last before the 2019-20 campaign, but then suffered a serious knee injury in August.

Bild reported on Tuesday that Sane believes he could win the Champions League with Bayern.

ROUND-UP

- Real Madrid are interested in Arsenal's Aubameyang, according to Sport. The report says Barcelona are also keen to land the forward if they cannot sign Inter star Lautaro Martinez.

- LaLiga's 'big two' also reportedly want N'Golo Kante. However, Goal report the midfielder wants to stay at Chelsea unless he is forced out.

- With Diego Costa's future uncertain, Atletico Madrid may be looking for a forward. AS report Arsenal's Alexandre Lacazette, who is contracted until 2022, is on the list of possible reinforcements for Los Colchoneros.

- Chris Smalling appears likely to return to Manchester United from his loan spell at Roma. Calciomercato believe the Serie A club are already looking at alternatives, with Tottenham defender Jan Vertonghen – out of contract at season's end – being considered.

- Olivier Giroud, another player out of contract at the end of the season, seems set to leave Chelsea. La Gazzetta dello Sport claim the striker is looking for a three-year deal from Inter, who were said to be interested in January. The report suggests Inter could offer the Frenchman a two-year contract with a club option for a third.

- Liverpool midfielder Adam Lallana and Borussia Dortmund attacker Mario Gotze are set to become free agents. Calciomercato report Milan are unconvinced by Lallana and unwilling to sign Gotze due to his high wages.

Loris Karius revealed he was still in touch with Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp as the goalkeeper nears the end of his loan spell at Besiktas.

Karius, 26, joined the Turkish club on a two-year loan from Liverpool in August 2018, a deal that is nearing its conclusion.

The goalkeeper is contracted with the Premier League giants until 2022 and said he maintained contact with Klopp.

"I primarily write with goalkeeper coach John Achterberg. Almost weekly, he is my first point of contact," Karius told Sport Bild on Wednesday. 

"But now and then I also write with Jurgen Klopp, I am in good contact with everyone. I was never out of it."

Hertha Berlin have been linked with a permanent move for Karius, whose last competitive appearance for Liverpool was his calamitous performance against Real Madrid in the 2018 Champions League final.

Karius refused to be drawn on his future, saying there was even greater uncertainty due to the coronavirus pandemic.

"I am not involved in speculation. The fact is that I have a contract in Liverpool until 2022," he said.

"And at the moment I'm just concentrating on the season at Besiktas. It is far too early to say anything about summer, especially now that nobody knows exactly what to do because of corona."

David Luiz hailed Mikel Arteta's impact since taking over at Arsenal, saying the head coach had brought the club together.

Arteta took charge at the Premier League club in December last year, overseeing eight wins and just two losses in 16 games.

David Luiz said the former Arsenal captain had given him a better understanding of the club while bringing everyone together.

"The thing that impressed me the most was that the day he arrived, he brought the whole club together, not just the players," the defender told ESPN Brasil on Wednesday.

"And I would like the club to walk together, with the same ideas, the same purpose, the same oxygen.

"Let everyone understand why we were there, who we were representing and the way we were supposed to do it.

"Since that first meeting, I saw, breathed and said now I understand why I am here. Since then, I have been enchanted by the form and conduct he had."

Arsenal were ninth in the Premier League when the season was suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Arteta tested positive for COVID-19 last month and has since recovered, but David Luiz said it was a scary time for the club.

"We were afraid. On the day he tested positive, we were sad, scared, we stuck at home," he said.

"We quarantined before everyone else here in England because of that. It was a great warning for us to have someone so close [test positive]."

Lucas Moura hopes Harry Kane stays at Tottenham, admitting it would be tough to replace the forward.

Kane has been the subject of plenty of transfer speculation after saying last month he would not stay at Spurs "just for the sake of it".

Lucas said Kane, who is linked with a move to Real Madrid, was crucial for Tottenham and he wants the England international to remain at the Premier League club.

"It's hard to speak about the future, about a negotiation because it's a personal decision. I'm sure that every season Tottenham receive offers for Harry Kane," he told Sky Sports.

"It's not me who has to decide, but of course I want to play with him in the next season. I want to stay with him because he's very important for us and it's not easy to find a player like him.

"Everyone knows he's a big player. He's very important for us, he's our striker and scores almost every game. I'm sure that [Jose] Mourinho wants to keep him. He counts on him for the rest of the season as well as for the next one."

The Premier League season was suspended last month due to the coronavirus pandemic, with Spurs sitting eighth in the table.

It remains to be seen when and if the campaign will resume and Lucas is unsure if it will be safe to play, even behind closed doors.

"I don't know, to be honest, if it is safe because maybe I have the virus without having symptoms. Then I can touch a team-mate or a rival [and] spread it and we don't know," he said.

"I'm not sure what is best to do. If it's to play or not to play, play with fans or without, it's a hard situation to decide. I'm not sure it's safe to play even without fans."

Manchester United forward Marcus Rashford has reserved two match tickets for an NHS worker as a thank-you for his efforts during the coronavirus crisis.

Twitter user Josh Howes tweeted the England international with a message to enquire over his recovery from a back injury.

The post showed Howes and his wife working at a hospital wearing personal protective equipment.

"I miss football!!!! @MarcusRashford how's the recovery going???" the tweet read.

"Wishing you well man. Literally can't wait to see you rip it up again!

"Me and the wife can get some tickets for O.T [Old Trafford] and we can stop having to wear this nonsense for 13 hours a day! #NHSCovidHeroes #NHSworkers."

Rashford was only too happy to make this wish come true.

"I've got two tickets reserved for you mate," he replied. "Looking forward to celebrating the real superstars around here.

"I'll be in touch when we are back up and running. Thank you for everything you're doing man."

Howes thanked Rashford before joking he should get in touch with Gary Neville to ask for a place to stay at the former United favourite's hotel.

Rashford's charitable efforts have been notable during the Premier League shutdown, with his online promotion helping to drive donations that allowed anti-hunger and food waste charity FareShare to reach almost one million children across the United Kingdom last week.

Jurgen Klopp sent thoughts, prayers and love to Liverpool supporters on the 31st anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster

At the 1989 FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest, 96 people died when a crush developed in the Leppings Lane End of Sheffield Wednesday's home stadium.

A 2016 inquest found the fans were unlawfully killed due to failings by the police and ambulance services.

The Hillsborough Family Support Group had planned to stage its final memorial service at Anfield on Wednesday but the coronavirus pandemic forced a postponement.

"Today is the most significant date for our football club each year," Klopp said in a video shared by Liverpool on Twitter.

"The plan was that we are together at Anfield today, but this is not possible.

"The only thing we can make sure of is that we are in each other's thoughts. And, believe me, you are in our thoughts.

"You have our thoughts, you have our prayers and, most of all, you have our love. You'll never walk alone."

Liverpool captain Jordan Henderson also posted a video message via the club's Twitter page.

"Today was a day when as a club we were all supposed to be together at Anfield to honour the lives of 96 people who went to a football match and never came home," the England midfielder said.

"The fact that we are unable to do so will make this anniversary especially hard for the families and survivors of Hillsborough.

"I'm not one for making speeches, but on behalf of all the players at Liverpool I just want to let everyone affected know that you are in our thoughts today.

"As ever, we are together in spirit even if we can't be together in person. You'll never walk alone."

Liverpool players, staff and supporters will observe a minute's silence at 15:06 BST on Wednesday, the time the match against Forest was stopped.

The original intention was to hold the memorial on the 30th anniversary of the tragedy but it coincided with the trial of David Duckenfield, the Hillsborough match commander who was cleared of gross negligence manslaughter following a retrial in November.

Tottenham great Jimmy Greaves has returned home from hospital, where he had been "very ill".

Spurs confirmed last week the 80-year-old had been admitted.

Greaves suffered a stroke in 2015 that left him severely disabled, although his son Danny insisted in February that he remained "in good spirits".

A post on Greaves' official social media pages brought a positive update on Wednesday.

"We are delighted to let you all know that Jimmy is now back at home recuperating with his wife Irene," it read.

"He has been very ill, and we are hoping he will be fine going forward."

The post added: "Thanks to the thousands of you that have sent goodwill messages.

"We love that so many of you still hold Jimmy so dear to your hearts, and it's lovely to know that there is still so much love for him in the world."

Greaves, who also represented Chelsea, Milan and West Ham, scored a record 266 goals for Tottenham between 1961 and 1970 and netted 44 times in 57 appearances for England.

His total of 357 goals in England's top flight is the highest figure in the competition's history.

Bruno Fernandes believes Paul Pogba's critics have forgotten how talented the World Cup winner is and cannot wait to play alongside him at Manchester United.

Pogba has often found himself the subject of scorn since returning to Old Trafford in a near-£90million deal from Juventus in August 2016 having mixed brilliant performances with games of indifference.

Sky Sports pundit and former Liverpool captain Graeme Souness has been a particularly vocal critic and has been involved in a back-and-forth war of words with Pogba this week.

But Fernandes, who has made a flying start to his own United career since joining from Sporting CP in January, thinks Pogba will benefit from the Red Devils' growing confidence when football resumes once the suspension of the Premier League due to the coronavirus pandemic is lifted.

"[I'm looking forward to playing with him] a lot. I think we have a lot of good players in midfield," Fernandes said in a Q&A with United's website about Pogba, who has not played since Boxing Day due to an ankle injury.

"Obviously Paul is injured from a long time [ago], and all we know is he has a lot of qualities.

"We can say in football that people normally forget what you do good when you have a mistake. You can do good for 34 games, and one game you do bad and everyone will remember that.

"Paul is coming from a bad moment, because of the situation. When he played also, the club and the team was not good, because the expectations are high for Paul, because Paul is a top player and Manchester United pay a lot for him, and expectations are a lot for him.

"It's normal when you are in that situation you don't play like a superstar, because everyone expects from Paul like they expect from [Cristiano] Ronaldo at Juventus or [Lionel] Messi at Barcelona.

"Everyone expects this from Paul in Manchester, because they know he has the qualities for this. Also, this is confidence in Paul. The team, we have a lot of confidence in Paul.

"More than expectations, I'm confident what Paul can give to us, to the team. I think he has a lot to give, he has a lot of quality, and I think with the positive energy in the club – because we won a lot of games and we are in a good moment – everyone, the supporters and everything, will be more patient with Paul maybe.

"I feel sometimes when things go wrong, the patience is less, you know? It's normal, because the fans want to win. Football is about winning; it's not about playing.

"But the confidence now in the team is bigger. So, I think Paul, when he comes back, he will feel this and will give more for the next months and the next games."

Fernandes, who registered three goals and four assists in just nine United appearances prior to football being halted, has yet to play with Pogba but did come up against the France international for former club Udinese when his now team-mate was at Juventus.

"I know Paul from Juve, because I played against him in Italy. And believe me, it's really hard to play against Paul," he added.

"Because I play in midfield, I mark him. We play in the same line, so it's really difficult to play against Paul, because he has power, he has technique.

"It's difficult to find a player like Paul: big, strong and technical. It's difficult to find a player like this, and he has a lot of qualities. I hope he comes [back] soon."

Inter are reportedly pushing Barcelona for Antoine Griezmann to be included in a deal for Lautaro Martinez.

Martinez, 22, is heavily linked with a move to the LaLiga giants after starring for Inter.

But Inter could be looking for the Argentina international's replacement to be part of the same deal.

 

TOP STORY – INTER ASK BARCELONA FOR GRIEZMANN IN MARTINEZ DEAL

Inter have asked Barcelona for Griezmann if the LaLiga giants want Martinez, according to Sport.

Griezmann only arrived at Barca ahead of this season and has largely struggled, scoring 14 times in 37 games.

Martinez, meanwhile, has been a standout at Inter, netting 16 times in 31 appearances.

ROUND-UP

- Barcelona may be considering their options. Cadena SER reports Real Sociedad forward Alexander Isak is an alternative should Barca not land Martinez or Paris Saint-Germain star Neymar.

- Manchester United are still looking at Atletico Madrid midfielder Saul Niguez. The Sun says the Premier League club would be willing to pay £70million (€80.4m) for the midfielder while giving the Spain international a bumper wage.

- Philippe Coutinho's future remains a talking point. The Sun claims Arsenal and Chelsea are set to get the chance to sign the playmaker, who is on loan at Bayern Munich from Barcelona this season. It says Coutinho is available on another season-long loan or for around £75m (€86.2m).

- Barcelona know their priority sales this close season. Sport reports the LaLiga giants want to sell midfielders Ivan Rakitic and Arturo Vidal, who are both out of contract in 2021.

- Perhaps Achraf Hakimi will stay at Borussia Dortmund. According to AS, the Bundesliga club want to extend the Real Madrid defender's stay beyond the end of this season, when his two-year loan spell expires.

- Diego Costa's time at Atletico Madrid may be up. Sport reports the LaLiga side are ready to bid farewell to the striker at season's end.

Donny van de Beek's agent insisted he was unworried about the Ajax midfielder's future, saying there was still plenty of interest in the Netherlands international.

Van de Beek has been linked with a move away from the Eredivisie giants, with Real Madrid and Manchester United reportedly interested.

The 22-year-old's agent, Guido Albers, said while the transfer market may be different after the coronavirus pandemic, Van de Beek's future is not a concern.

"It will all be different, but I also have to be realistic," he told Voetbal International on Tuesday.

"It also creates opportunities at clubs that perhaps thought they had no chance anymore and are now knocking on the door.

"I'm not worried about Donny."

Albers was unwilling to go into detail about which clubs wanted Van de Beek, but said the interest had been ongoing.

"The interest has been, and that is also known, for a long time and from several clubs," he said.

"We will see what will come out of that in the coming weeks. I dare not say anything about it at the moment.

"I can't say anything about it because a number of things are just confidential. The situation will have changed per club and we have to look closely at that."

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