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Dutchman Beekmans signs with Gold Coast

Miron Bleiberg has bolstered his squad for the upcoming 2011/12 Hyundai A-League season by agreeing terms with 29-year-old Dutchman, Paul Beekmans.

The experienced Beekmans joins Gold Coast from Dutch First Division side SC Cambuur-Leeuwarden after spending the majority of his early career with FC Den Bosch where he made almost 200 appearances (23 goals) in both the Dutch Eredivisie (top division) and First Division between 2002 and 2008.

A regular in the SC Cambuur side, the 189cm defensive utility made 99 appearances for the club scoring 6 goals during his three seasons at the Excelsior Stadium.

Beekmans, who will arrive on the Gold Coast later this month, is comfortable playing as a central defender or a defensive midfielder, making him the ideal replacement for departed centre-backs, Dino Djulbic and Bas van den Brink.

Ironically, it was former United defender van den Brink who recently offered advice to Beekmans about the club, the country and the competition - a conversation that rubber-stamped the deal for Gold Coast.

United Head Coach Miron Bleiberg said he was delighted to have snared a player he scouted prior to Gold Coast's first season in the Hyundai A-League and has kept tabs on ever since.

"At 29 he is at a very good age for a move to Australia and having played in both the top division and the First Division in Holland he comes to us with the experience we need," Bleiberg said.

"His flexibility in terms of the positions he can play, along with his height and strength, make him a very good signing for us and we are delighted to have concluded the deal as he did have other offers on the table.

"He was recommended to us some time ago and I saw him play for SC Cambuur two years ago when I was over there. At that time he was unavailable so it's pleasing to have finally managed to bring him to the Gold Coast.

"Paul will bring a lot to the table for us and I have no doubts that he will prove to be an excellent signing," he said.

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