Dirk Kuyt has one more run-in left in the tank.
The Dutch superstar has returned to the field to help his boyhood club Quick Boys earn promotion from the Derde Divisie, the Dutch fourth tier. Quick Boys sits second in the Derde Divisie table, five points back of leaders SV Spakenburg. The top spot earns automatic promotion, with the next four places qualifying for the playoff.
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Kuyt first joined Quick Boys as a six-year-old in 1986, working his way through the club’s youth system and earning his professional debut in 1998 before moving to FC Utrecht as an 18-year-old. Now at 37 years old, Kuyt retired this past summer after winning the Eredivisie title with Feyenoord.
Kuyt was already an assistant with Quick Boys, and has made his mark. The club dismissed a striker after the two argued in a league match back in mid-March, in which the striker bailed on the game at halftime.
The news comes less than 24 hours after Kuyt was unveiled as the U-19 manager in Feyenoord’s youth system.
THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) Dirk Kuyt, the veteran captain of Feyenoord who led his team to its first Dutch league title in 18 years, is retiring.
Feyenoord says the 36-year-old Kuyt, who returned to Rotterdam two years ago saying he wanted to win the league, told coach Giovanni van Bronckhorst of his decision Wednesday.
Kuyt’s 19 seasons as a professional player started at Utrecht before going to Feyenoord. He then moved to Liverpool, Fenerbahce and back to Feyenoord.
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Kuyt also played 104 internationals for the Netherlands, including the World Cup final in 2010, when the Netherlands lost to Spain in extra time.
Technical director Martin van Geel says “we are unbelievably grateful to Dirk for what he has meant to Feyenoord for the last two years.”
THE HAGUE, Netherlands (AP) Veteran captain Dirk Kuyt scored a hat trick Sunday as Feyenoord beat Heracles Almelo 3-1 to win its 15th Dutch Eredivisie title and the first in 18 long years for its fervent fans.
Kuyt, 36, who returned to Feyenoord in the twilight of his career saying he wanted to lead the team to the Dutch championship, scored his 100th goal for the club in the first minute to settle nerves throughout Rotterdam. He doubled the lead in the 12th, then put the result beyond doubt with a penalty kick shortly before the end.
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Thousands of fans in the city center watched on large screens and roared in delight after Kuyt’s early opener and again 11 minutes later. The party truly began across the port city when Kuyt grabbed his third.
Feyenoord thrashed Heerenveen Sunday in Eredivisie play, up 5-0 at halftime to cruise to a 5-2 win.
At the center of it was 35-year-old Dirk Kuyt.
The former Liverpool veteran netted three times in the first half, a hat-trick that sent him to seven goals through the season’s first 10 matches, just one shy of the league’s top goalscorer Anwar El-Ghazi of Ajax.
His first came as Simon Gustafsson burst through the middle and teed up Kuyt on the top right corner of the box, and the winger buried home the opener just seven minutes in.
Kuyt would get his second in the 32nd minute with Feyenoord already 3-0 up when he pinged home a deflected shot from almost exactly the same spot as his first, teed up by another former Premier League player Eljero Elia.
Finally, Kuyt would complete his hat-trick in the 39th minute to give Feyenoord a 5-0 lead.
At 35 years old, Kuyt has played every minute for Feyenoord so far this season in Eredivisie play, having lost just once in 10 matches so far. Today’s win brought the club level with Ajax at the top of the league table on 22 points.
Southampton’s Dutch manager could be adding a fellow countryman to his playing staff at St Mary’s.
According to reports on Thursday from multiple UK outlets including The Sun, Daily Mirror and others, Fenerbache winger Dirk Kuyt could be on his way back to the Premier League to sign with Ronald Koeman’s Southampton in January.
[VIDEO: Premier League highlights]
Kuyt, 34, shone at the World Cup for the Netherlands this summer in an unfamiliar wing back role for the Oranje.
The former Feyenoord star would certainly be a good acquisition for Saints, as they continue their impressive start to the PL season. Koeman’s men are currently third in the PL on 16 points after five wins from their first eight games and an 8-0 win over Sunderland last weekend showcased their sublime attacking talents.
Where Kuyt would fit in at Saints is unclear and the fact that he’s no spring chicken make this rumor a little confusing as Southampton are a team loaded with young players and have a conveyor belt of talent ready to roll out of their famed academy. Their philosophy is to give young players a chance, but if Kuyt is available in January to help add depth to the squad, he’s definitely worth a punt.
Koeman will likely discuss the potential to sign Kuyt in his prematch press conference later on Thursday before Saints’ home match vs. Stoke City on Saturday.
Capable of playing in attack, midfield or even defense, Kuyt could be a handy addition with his bags of PL experience at Liverpool. He was hugely popular during his six-year spell at Anfield with his endless running appreciated by the home fans plus plenty of clutch goals, including a strike in the 2006-07 Champions League final, with 71 in 286 appearances. With Southampton eager to keep surprising everyone between now and the end of the season and trying to better last season’s finish of eighth, Kuyt’s nous could help Saints young crop of talented players kick on and push for a top six finish.
Let’s see what straight-talking Koeman has to say about this rumor…