Premier League • England

Dream Arsenal signing billed as a ‘crazy talent’ by bedazzled Jordan Henderson as massive Ajax coup takes shape

Jorrel Hato next to the Arsenal and Ajax badges

Ajax defender Jorrel Hato remains a target for Arsenal

Arsenal have been given a glowing review of one of their top summer transfer targets Jorrel Hato by his new Ajax team-mate Jordan Henderson.

The 17-year-old centre-back is the latest in the line of outstanding Dutch products produced by the Eredivisie giants and has now emerged on the radar of a host of European teams.

Despite his tender age, Hato has already captained Ajax on two occasions this season, although he is not legally allowed to join a foreign club until he is 18 due to post-Brexit immigration rules.

We told you last month how Arsenal hold a firm interest in the talented defender and now the London Evening Standard has followed that report up, stating that Mikel Arteta a big fan of Hato’s ability to play across the backline.

A summer swoop for Hato would be a repeat of Arsenal‘s 2023 raid on Ajax for another defensive talent Jurrien Timber.

And it appears that Ajax’s latest signing, Henderson, is already a massive fan after making his debut for the club alongside the defensive talent.

The England midfielder, who ripped up his Saudi Pro League contract to head back to Europe, has been wowed by Hato’s “crazy” ability and is sure the defender will reach the top.

“It’s crazy how young he is, but obviously how mature he looks when he’s on the pitch and also off the pitch,” Henderson told the Ajax website. “He’s a very mature person. Works hard. Fantastic player. And yeah, he has a bright future ahead of him, I’m sure.”

With Henderson seemingly giving the Gunners the green light to make a move for Hato, the former Liverpool skipper was also asked how he can help the wonderkid through his leadership skills, adding: “I think he just needs to continue to do what he’s he’s been doing.

“Obviously it’s been working for him, but, yeah, I’ll try to help him. And also, the players if they ask for a little bit of advice off the field. If I can help them I’m sure I’ll try and do that, of course.”

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Hato one of numerous young talents at Ajax

Henderson played the entire 90 minutes on his Ajax debut in their 1-1 draw with PSV last week alongside Hato and he spoke of his delight at the prospect of being the wise old head in such a young team.

“I’ve very excited to see what the future holds for this team, because I think it’s filled with a lot of potential,” Henderson added. “I’ve enjoyed it very much. You know, it’s been a very good first ten days or so. The lads have been really good in terms of welcoming us into the group. The staff, the fans, everybody really.

“Even when I’m in the city, people have been so good to us. It’s made us feel at home straight away. Which also helps when I’m trying to perform on the pitch every day in training and, and then in the game. So I’ve enjoyed it very much so far and hopefully we can just continue this.

“I had a good picture of it (the club) before, but yet even probably better than that. The fans, the players, the staff, everybody’s he’s been really good. In the arena was amazing to play there for the first time for I was pretty special. It’s a moment I’ll always remember. But hopefully I can have many more games and then more times to put on the shirt.”

Arsenal, meanwhile, are back in action on Sunday when they head to West Ham in the Premier League.

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