After John Heitinga joined the West Ham coaching staff, Boudewijn Zenden sent him a message. In addition to Mark Robson and Henry Newman’s appointments, the Hammers also announced on September 5 that the Dutchman had joined the team as David Moyes’ first-team assistant.
In response to the announcement, Heitinga shared a photo of himself with the Irons manager on Instagram with the remark, “proud” to be a member of the club. After which Zenden replied to him, “good luck in London.”
It’s good to see Zenden send Heitinga his best wishes since the two temporarily teamed up for the Netherlands during the beginning of Heitinga’s professional career.
John Heitinga’s experience can help the West Ham team massively
Heitinga began his professional playing career in 2001 at Ajax, where he won two league titles until leaving in 2008. After that, he played for Atletico Madrid for just one season before joining Everton in England. Before joining Fulham in 2013, Heitinga played 140 matches for Everton over the course of four seasons. However, he moved on with Hertha Berlin a year later, turning down a transfer offer from West Ham in the process. Heitinga returned to Ajax in 2015 and played there three more times before retiring in February 2016. He soon began working with the Dutch team as a coach before taking over as the youth team’s manager for 18 months beginning in July 2021.
After Alfred Schreuder was let go in January of this year, Heitinga was then granted the lead position. He only lost four times in 22 games, but he was unable to overtake eventual champions Feyenoord. In June, Heitinga was fired from his position, and Maurice Steijn took over.
The former Everton defender is familiar with Moyes from their time together at Goodison Park. Hence, the West Ham manager must have a lot of faith in him to have added him to his coaching staff.
Heitinga played 87 times for the outstanding Dutch team that advanced to the 2010 World Cup final. Therefore, the 39-year-old has extensive playing experience in the sport.
He will be able to impart his expertise to the Irons’ defensive players. He also has some managerial experience after most recently serving as Ajax’s temporary head coach.
Heitinga said in his post that the Hammers have had a promising start to the new season. He also said that he is looking forward to the forthcoming Premier League and European games.
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