Dutch goalkeeper Stekelenburg joins Koeman at Everton


Liverpool (AFP) – Dutch international goalkeeper Maarten Stekelenburg signed for Premier League Everton on Friday from second-tier Fulham, becoming Ronald Koeman’s first capture since he took over at Goodison Park.

The 33-year-old, who signed a three-year contract for an undisclosed fee, impressed compatriot Koeman when he played under him on loan at Southampton last season.

Koeman, who replaced the sacked Roberto Martinez last month at Everton, gave Stekelenburg his professional debut when he was in charge of Ajax.

“I’m very happy — things have moved very fast over the last couple of days,” Stekelenburg told evertontv.

“He (Koeman) has come to Everton and he called me a few days after asking if I was willing to follow him. It wasn’t difficult to make that choice.

“He’s one of the best coaches — he’s straight-talking, he’s fair and he has confidence in me, which counts as well.

“I’ve been here (in England) for a couple of seasons and I love the Premier League. It’s fantastic that I can stay.”

Stekelenburg, capped 54 times and part of the Dutch side that lost to Spain in the 2010 World Cup final, struggled to hold down a first-team place at Fulham after joining from Serie A outfit Roma in 2013 and was loaned out to Ligue 1 Monaco and then to Southampton.

Koeman, reportedly promised more than £100 million (125 million euros, $141 million) to invest in new players, has been rumoured to also be eyeing up another Dutch goalkeeper, Tim Krul, who is with relegated Newcastle.

Everton’s veteran American Tim Howard left at the end of last season, meaning the unpredictable Joel Robles was the remaining senior goalkeeper.

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