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Atalanta got themselves a real bargain on deadline day with 23-year old Hans Hateboer, who has been a standout performer for Groningen over the last two seasons. A bullish attack-minded right-back, Hateboer is quick, strong and a good crosser of the ball. He has looked ready for a move from Groningen for a while and he finally leaves the Eredivisie with the most assists for a defender this season.

Hateboer was a regular performer for Netherlands U21 side over the last few years and many believe the 23-year-old should be challenging for a starting spot in the full Dutch squad. Atalanta is a good stepping stone for him and if he can follow in the footsteps of Marten de Roon then a move to a bigger club and a first national team call-up won’t take long.

This season for Groningen, Hateboer has played in 19 matches in the Eredivisie playing the full 90 minutes in each match he has played. His arrival will certainly give Andrea Conti a run for his money in order to remain the starter for La Dea.

The Nerazzurri were fortunate not to be ripped apart in the January transfer window given the amount of high profile youngsters they had on the roster. The only starter they really lost was Roberto Gagliardini and he’s already being replaced by 17 year old Bergamo born Andrea Melegoni. The future is teeming with excitement for Atalanta, and the signing of Hateboer doesn’t come only as a surprise, but as a sign of major ambition.

Michael Bell of Football-Oranje contributed to this article. 

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