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AZ goalkeeper Jasper Schendelaar: Why I rejected Arsenal at 16

AZ Alkmaar goalkeeper Jasper Schendelaar admits turning down Arsenal as a teenager.

The Holland U20 international has just signed on-loan with Telstar to work with coach Andries Jonker.

Jonker is a former Arsenal academy director and Schendelaar told Voetbalzone: “Andries wanted me when I was fifteen or sixteen and he was still working as head of youth training at Arsenal.

"At first I didn't know he was a trainer at Telstar, but once I heard that, it was pretty easy. I had an interview and that felt good, so I just saw this as the best step."

On turning down Arsenal, he explained: “Immediately after my birth, I was registered with the Waaghalzen (the junior club of AZ), I really grew up with AZ. My mother always tells me in friends' books when asked what do you want to be when you grow up? I wrote that I wanted to become AZ goalkeeper. So if you can sign a contract with your club at the age of sixteen ... It's hard to say if that's better than Arsenal. But I wanted that. I wanted to get it first from AZ. That's how I am still in it."

Carlos Volcano
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Carlos Volcano

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