If you haven’t heard the name of Cyriel Dessers, then you really need to start paying attention to the Dutch Eredivisie more often. The Heracles forward has been one of the brightest stars in a league where players from Ajax, PSV Eindhoven and Feyenoord tend to get most of the attention.
Dessers, however, has taken a long path to become relevant in one of Europe’s top second-tier leagues. He played for KSC Lokeren for two years before joining NAC Breda, and he later moved to Utrecht following just one year at his new club. He signed with Heracles during the summer before the 2019-20 season, and he is arguably going through the best run of form of his career.
These last few years have come out of nowhere, though. He only netted seven goals for Lokeren in 40 games, but he began to show signs of life at NAC Breda, where he netted 29 goals and 13 assists in 40 matches. That granted him a move to Utrecht, where he posted 19 goals and seven assists in 56 games.
Signing with Heracles has put him in a whole new level
These prolific seasons have sent him to Heracles, where he has looked absolutely unstoppable. In 25 games, he has 17 goals and six assists in all competitions. The 25-year-old forward has 14 goals and five assists in 22 Eredivisie matches this season, and he also adds three goals in three Cup outings as well. He is averaging one goal per 131 minutes in all competitions to date, and has shown a keen eye for goal despite playing for one of the weakest teams in the Eredivisie.
Dessers can also play as a left winger and as an attacking midfielder if needed. However, his best position lies as a centre forward. That’s the role he has been fulfilling at Heracles and, to this point, it wouldn’t be shocking if he gets a call-up to the Belgian national team. He has done more than enough to deserve at least some consideration.
Dessers has managed to stand out in a league where attackers such as Dusan Tadic, Donyell Malen and Hakim Ziyech are the top performers. But the 25-year-old forward has justified his place as one of the top Eredivisie scoring threats with consistency and hard work.
Don’t be surprised if he ends up moving to a more competitive environment sooner than later.