South African-born youngster Keith Groeneveld has joined Standard Liege on a three-year deal after trials at Manchester United and Arsenal, writes WADE PRETORIUS.
Groeneveld has put pen to paper on his first professional contract after opting to remain in Belgium to further his career.
After beginning his youth career at Royal Antwerp FC, he moved to KV Mechelen and along with the move came the transition from central midfield to centre-back. Groeneveld took the change in his stride and has been made captain of the KV Mechelen U17 side and has enjoyed an excellent season.
His form, and tag as one of the brightest young talents in Belgium, saw him invited to train at the Manchester United academy for a week in April. During his trial at United, Groeneveld played twice for the Manchester giants and got his name on the scoresheet against Burnley.
Following his trial at the Red Devils, the young defender went on trial at rivals Arsenal.
Despite interest from the two European giants, Groeneveld decided against a move to England and agreed to join Standard Liege.
‘Proud and grateful to have signed my first professional contract at Standard Liege today for the next three years.’ wrote Groeneveld on a social media post.
— Keith Groeneveld (@Groeneveld44) June 2, 2016
Groeneveld was born in Kimberley in 1999 and immigrated to Belgium at the age of five.