One of the most talented centre-backs, the Virgil van Dijk heir at Celtic, joins... Brentford?

One of the most talented centre-backs, the Virgil van Dijk heir at Celtic, joins... Brentford?

Norway is enjoying the early days of its golden generation the way Belgium was (supposed to) in the past fiveish years and while Erling Haaland is the clear leader of it, the backline was supposed to be led by Kristoffer Ajer. The young man with four seasons of Scottish football, already collecting 176 caps for the Scottish giants, was the replacement for Virgil Van Dijk in a lot of ways.

Imposing with his 198 centimetres tall and technically gifted as proven by his versatility on the pitch, having played as a defensive midfielder too, Ajer was seen as the complete package of a new age centre-back. With 23 caps already played for Norway, the 23-year-old was seen as ready for the big leagues, yet he decidedly took a smaller step and joined Brentford of all teams.

The newcomer to the English Premier League has acquired the Norweigan wonder for €15,700,000 amidst interest from Norwich. The young player signed a long-term contract with the side - five years!

Thomas Frank, Brentford's manager, said of the acquisition of his team that is readying for the top rank for the first time since practically World War II.

"We wanted to get another central defender in, and Kris was our first choice. We think he fits the position specific profile perfectly, especially on the ball. Kris is very composed and can find the right passes between the lines. His level when bringing the ball forward is very high. As a defender he has the physicality that you need, and he won his duels when he played in the Scottish league. He can help us in both boxes, with his strength in the air," said Frank.

Rasmus Ankersen, Brentford's co-director of football, confirmed that the club faced competition to bring him in.

"Kristoffer has scouted extremely well, and he ticks all the boxes for what we want in a Brentford defender on and off the pitch. It goes without saying that a player of his calibre has many options. We are really pleased that Kristoffer has decided to commit his future to Brentford," said Ankersen.

Ajer has played 60 games for his country at all levels, scoring eight goals, and his experience at Celtic brought him eight trophies. The Bees are likely to cash in on him in the future probably fivefold for what they brought him in for.


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