Football Club Groningen is a Dutch professional football club based in Groningen. The club plays in the Eredivisie, the highest football league of the Netherlands. And the club has seen some big names in the white and green shirt. Down are some players you didn’t know played for FC Groningen.
5. Arjen Robben (1996-2002)
Arjen Robben, pictured during his days at his first professional club, Groningen, back in 2001 pic.twitter.com/w4Nu1dBa71
— TEAMtalk (@TEAMtalk) February 28, 2018
Groningen was Robben’s first professional club. Here, he developed his distinctive style of cutting inside from the right onto his left foot to score some quite spectacular goals.
However, he did not play until 3 December 2000 against RKC Waalwijk as a substitute for the injured Leonardo dos Santos in the 79th minute. During the winter, Robben managed to play himself into the starting lineup.
Robben stayed with Groningen and improved steadily during the 2001–02 season, after which he joined PSV for €3.9 million.
4. Luis Suarez (2006-2007)
Luis Suarez during his days at FC Groningen. pic.twitter.com/NJLKIYFIAC
— Promising Young (@PromisingYoung) December 29, 2016
Suarez was 19 years old when he joined Groningen. “When they (Nacional) told me that I had the opportunity to go to Groningen, the first thing I did was to look on the PlayStation where they played and what shirt they wore”. Suarez told Marca.
Suarez scored goals for Groningen, but he also had disciplinary problems; in one five-game stretch in January 2007, he scored four goals but received three yellow cards and one red card.
Suarez ended with 10 goals in 29 league appearances to help Groningen finish eighth in the 2006–07 Eredivisie. Ajax saw potential in Suárez and offered Groningen €7.5 million for him.
3. Daley Blind (2010)
— Groningen VAVEL (@Groningen_VAVEL) February 28, 2014
On 5 January 2010, Blind joined Groningen on loan for the remainder of the 2009–10 season, during the winter transfer window.
At Groningen, Blind was mainly used as a right-back. He was almost sold to Groningen for €1.5 million by Ajax on a permanent basis but the move did not materialize.