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Dutch giants Feyenoord have a Norwegian of Indian descent on their roster for the coming season. Goal.com profiles the talented Harmeet Singh...

EDITORIAL
By Kaustav Bera


After Indian national team skipper Sunil Chhetri announced that he would be joining Sporting clube de Portugal (their 'B' team) for the 2012-13 season, there was another transfer story which was of interest to Indians.

Harmeet Singh, Norwegian by birth and Indian by descent, has signed with one of the three Dutch giants, Feyenoord Rotterdam from his former club Valerenga for a reported fee of  €300,000.

Goal.com profiles the 21 year old youngster Harmeet Singh, who has already represented Norway thrice.
Harmeet Singh
Age -21 ( Born : 12th November, 1990 )
National Team - Norway
Position - Central Defensive Midfielder




















Nickname - The Norwegian Iniesta

Playing Style


He is the archetypal deep-lying midfielder, who is comfortable receiving the ball with his back to goal, slowing the game down before turning at pace and distributing it thereafter. At Valerenga his partnership with playmaker Mohammed Fellah was much-lauded with the pair frequently working off each other in the middle, while he would often release wingers such as Martin Pusic and Dawda Leigh from deep.
 
Alongside his obvious technical ability, Singh has notably added a clear competitive edge to his game over the last year or so, and although still well-liked and respected in Norway, he now flies into tackles and harries opposition midfielders.

Thus he combines the skills of a classical defensive midfielder as well as a playmaker. His playmaking skills and short frame has also earned him the moniker 'The Norwegian Iniesta'.
 
 
Clubs Represented                                   

Youth Career

 
Oslo Youth Multi Sports Club Furuset IF

 Valerenga FC
2003-2007


Senior Career

    
  
Valerenga FC 2007-12


  
    Feyenoord Rotterdam 2012-



International Career

 
Norway  3 caps 0 goals (2012- )


National Appearances : 3 (Senior Team), 75 (Youth team)
Goals Scored : 0 (Senior Goals), 9 (Youth Goals)

Club Appearances : 101
Goals Scored : 8

Early Life

The promising Norwegian started his career at Oslo Youth Multi Sports Club Furuset IF. However it was his move to Norwegian top division club Valerenga FC in 2003, when he was just 13 years old, that kick started his footballing career.

Highlights of his career

Club Career

Harmeet graduated to the first team of Valerenga in 2007 after a four year stint with their youth team. However he had to wait for another year and it was only in 2008 that manager, Martin Andresen picked him against Rosenborg in the Norwegian First Division. In the 2009 season, Singh scored 3 goals, including one stunner against Molde in the Norwegian Cup semi finals, which earned the 19 year old a nomination for Goal of the Year in Norway. With them he did win the 2008 Norwegian Cup as well as finishing runners up in the 2009 Norwegian First Division and the Super Cup.

On July 5, 2012, Harmeet got his big break as he was signed for a sum of €300,000 by Dutch giants Feyenoord Rotterdam. Although off late, Feyenoord has not challenged for the Eredivisie, the last season, they did finish runners up behind Ajax Amsterdam.

Although at first glance the money coughed up for his signature might seem a small, Feyenoord are going through financial difficulties and thus their decision to buy him certainly means that he is part of their plan for revival and to win a league title, which they had last won in 1998-99.

International Career

Harmeet Singh has been a regular at the youth setup for Norway turning up in all of the age group teams right from U-15 to U-21 stages. His impressive displays there has prompted coach Egil Olsen to call him up for the national team.
 
Singh only has 3 caps for Norway but there is a definite feeling that he will eventually usurp the less technically gifted Christian Grindheim or Rennes' Alex Tettey, both of whom have played the deeper role in the centre of Egil Olsen's midfield. There are plenty of people excited enough by him to call for Singh to start every game for the national side.


How Will Harmeet Fit In The Feyenoord Squad

GOALKEEPER

Erwin Mulder


RIGHT-BACK
CENTRE BACK
CENTRE BACK
LEFT-BACK

Daryl Janmaat


Ron Vlaar


Stefan de Vrij


Bruno Martins Indi


CENTRE MIDFIELD
CENTRE MIDFIELD
CENTRE MIDFIELD

Harmeet Singh
(Ruud Vormer)


Lex Immers


Jordy Clasie


RIGHT FORWARD
CENTRE FORWARD
LEFT FORWARD

Ruben Schaken

Guyon Fernandez

Sekou Cisse

Stefan Coerts, Goal.com's Dutch Football Editor, had this to say about Harmeet's chances of making the first team squad, and who his rivals for the midfield position might be in the 2012-13 season.

"Ruud Vormer will be Singh's biggest rival for a starting berth. It''s hard to say who of the two will start. The fact that they paid a transfer fee for Singh says a lot, even if it was only a modest fee, as Feyenoord's financial situation is still tricky. Vormer, who joined Feyenoord from Roda on a free, has been one of the most consistent performers in the Eredivisie in recent years, though. Ronald Koeman, the coach of Feyenoord will probably make a decision based on their performances in pre season."


Team Honours


Valerenga FC


  Winners: Norwegian Cup 2008
  Runners Up: Norwegian Tippeligaen 2009
  Runners Up: Norwegian Superfinalen 2009

 

Quotable Quotes


Pep Guardiola said this of Singh after a friendly between Barcelona and Valerenga two years ago

"The team had good midfielders, but we knew that already. We saw two videos of Valerenga and knew what the players [Mohammed] Fellah and [Harmeet] Singh are capable of. We thought the Norwegian team just hit long passes, but they played well."


Feyenoord Sporting Direcor Van Geel had this to say about Harmeet.

"He is a player with a lot of talent who will get the chance to further develop at Feyenoord. You can compare him to El Ahmadi. Our scouting team had been following Singh for a while,"



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Having chosen to play for Norway, do you think AIFF needs to do more to bring back the talent to India?

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