'Chelsea is a nice club for Ziyech' - Van de Beek backs Ajax team-mate to succeed at Stamford Bridge

The Dutchman congratulated his club colleague amid reports the Moroccan has verbally agreed to join up with the Blues this summer

Donny van de Beek says he is "confident" that Ajax team-mate Hakim Ziyech "will do well" at Chelsea if his proposed move to Stamford Bridge goes through as expected.

Goal has reported that the Blues are close to agreeing a €45 million (£38m/$49m) deal to sign Ziyech, who is likely to become Frank Lampard's first major signing at the club.

The Chelsea boss tried to bring in the 26-year-old in January but Ajax made it clear that they were not prepared to sanction his departure until the end of the season.

Ajax head coach Erik ten Hag confirmed the news prior to his side's meeting with Vitesse in the KNVB Cup on Wednesday night, stating: "Ziyech to Chelsea? A transfer was coming, we expected it to happen.

"And I actually already expected this one or two years earlier."

Van de Beek has now spoken out to wish Ziyech all the best at Chelsea, insisting he "deserves" the chance to take up a new challenge in the Premier League after four years of service at the Johan Cruyff ArenA.

When asked to comment on the Morocco international's future, Van de Beek told Voetbal Primeur: "Yes, if I hear all the reports, I will assume that it is already far. I do not know if it is completely finished.

"I wish him everything and I hope he will do very well there. It is a step he deserves in my opinion. He is a fantastic football player, so I am confident that he will do well.

"I think it's a very nice club with a lot of young players that can grow. I think Hakim will certainly be in [the right] place.

"Everyone, of course, has their opinion about that, but I think it's a nice club for him."

Ziyech has contributed six goals and 12 assists to Ajax's Eredivisie cause this season, helping the reigning champions rise to the top of the standings once again.

The attacking midfielder was instrumental in their domestic double success in 2018-19, and also stood out during the team's run to the semi-finals of the Champions League.

Ajax were knocked out of the competition in the group stages this time around, as they finished behind Valencia and Chelsea in group H.

Ziyech produced a superb performance in a thrilling 4-4 draw at Stamford Bridge, however, which obviously piqued Lampard's interest as he looks to bolster his Blues squad in 2020.

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