Celtic’s Daniel Arzani ‘should have gone to Netherlands’ says ex-Australia star

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Former Australia international Brett Emerton believes Daniel Arzani would have been better off joining a team in the Netherlands rather than Celtic.

The Manchester City winger agreed a two-season loan deal with the Hoops after swapping Melbourne City for Pep Guardiola’s team, but former Blackburn Rovers man Emerton feels a switch to the Eredivisie would have been better.

Daniel Arzani is put through his paces in training, but was left out of Celtic's Europa League squad. Picture: SNS Group

Daniel Arzani is put through his paces in training, but was left out of Celtic's Europa League squad. Picture: SNS Group

PSV Eindhoven and PEC Zwolle were both linked with the Iranian-born youngster prior to his move to England.

Speaking to Goal.com, Emerton said: “I think for [Daniel’s] development [the Netherlands] would’ve been a better move, if I’m honest.

“But that’s not to say he can’t go to Celtic, spend one or two seasons performing well and get a big move from there.

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Former Australia international Brett Emerton reckons Arzani should have gone to the Netherlands. Picture: Getty Images

Former Australia international Brett Emerton reckons Arzani should have gone to the Netherlands. Picture: Getty Images

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“I’m hopeful he’ll do well. I want our national team to do well and for that we need our players in the biggest leagues week in, week out. That should be his ambition.

“I went to Feyenoord and my ideal goal was to end up playing in the Premier League.”

Emerton believes the Dutch top flight can be a great stepping stone, highlighting current Australia caps and Netherlands-based quartet Trent Sainsbury, Aziz Behich, Ajdin Hrustic and John Iredale.

He continued: “I wasn’t able to go straight [to England] due to work permit reasons so I used Holland as a stepping stone for my career and think it worked out perfectly well.”

Emerton played 95 games for Australia, and 294 times for Blackburn after joining from Feyenoord. He wrapped up his career with a three-season spell at hometown side Sydney FC.