22 Midfielder Spartak Moscow Netherlands
2014 has been...
…lots of fun - a very under-rated commodity in football.
Listen, we know football’s a very serious business. We know fiscal responsibility and Champion’s League places are reasons for an open-top bus parade these days, we know you can’t even really call yourself a fan unless you know the name of the 15-year old trialist who just spent a week at your club, and we know unless you can recite the 2011 Football Manager Wonderkids list off by heart you’re no one, but sometimes don’t you just want to smile?
That’s what Quincy Promes makes us do. With a step-over here, a mazy dribble there and a thumping finish, he somehow combines the ability to be both the quintessential modern footballer and something of a throwback. He can play as an attacking midfielder, wide in a front-three or as an old-fashioned winger, and in a world of tactical intricacies he can get himself on the ball, run in a straight line and finish emphatically. He’s excellent when dribbling, just as quick with or without it the ball and remains fearless throughout. We like him. We like him a lot.
He was great on loan at Go Ahead Eagles and returned to Twente last season with a little first team experience to back up the precocious talent. He then proceeded to make 31 appearances and score 11 goals, and there’s something else we should talk about. YouTube is a bastard for making a player look special, editing 2 minutes of a year’s worth of football could make you believe in Fernando Torres again, but it is well worth you heading there to watch Quincy Promes score goals for either club or at youth level with his country. Volleys? Check. Solo runs? Check. Strikes from 25-yards? Check. Beautiful control and turn before finishing? Check, check, check and check. He scores great goals but still does the simple things too, often showing a striker’s instinct positioning wise.
So it was inevitable he was being scouted and a move from the Eredivisie was on the cards. In August Spartak Moscow moved quickly and signed the player for a reported €15m and at the time of writing nearly 15 appearances and 5 goals into his career in Russia, it already looks like it may just prove to be a bargain. He’s still adjusting but you wouldn’t know it. A really good year only missing a trophy but crowned with 3 full international caps. Excited? You should be.
His rise has been meteoric in many respects – explosive on loan, great first full season, some wonderful goals scored, larger contract signed with Twente, a big transfer despite that in the summer and a good start at his new club – so you start to wonder where the ceiling is? We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, comparison is lazy and often useless, but it’s impossible not to watch Promes at his best and not think about someone like Robben or Ronaldo at the same age. We’re not for a moment suggesting he’s going to get to that sort of world-beating all-encompassing level, but the potential is there to be something special.
It takes time to settle at a new club in a different country and there has definitely been a period of adjustment, and we’re sure there will be a plateau at some point as defenders start to plan for him properly. However that shouldn’t deter you watching as he’s capable of doing that one thing that draws a smile from you. We’re raving here because of that, he gives us joy in a world were fun is now frowned upon, and we think there may well be big things ahead.
He may be new to Moscow but don’t rule out the potential of another move, perhaps even as early as the summer, to a Champion’s League last-eight club. Manchester United remain huge admirers and at a club with pedigree when it comes to wingers he may well be an excellent fit. He’s obviously ambitious though so any move to Old Trafford may well be tied to their end results this season. Wherever he goes or if he stays we’ll still keep watching and smiling. This year’s #IBWM100 man-crush? Very possibly, although any discussion of such things usually ends up with the editors meeting behind the IBWM Towers bike-sheds to fight out their differences.
“In a mere 15 months, Promes went from a 2nd tier talent to Dutch international too good for the Eredivisie. Still, there's more to come” – Michiel Jongsma
"No Dutch player was involved in more Eredivisie goals in 2013/14 than Quincy Promes (19)." - OptaJoe
B We’re excited here, one of the best players to watch on this list and taking a new club, league and country in his stride, we recommend you keep a close eye on this one.
For Ellesse go to JD Sports