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Five of the best Dutch strikers in Premier League history

The Netherlands have a long and storied history of producing elite footballers with a whole host of Dutch talents having made a huge impression upon their arrival in the Premier League.

The Dutch are amongst the most respected nations in world football, and have a tendency to produce some fine forward stars.

We’ve decided to look back at some to have starred in English football, here are five of the best Dutch strikers in Premier League history…

Dennis Bergkamp

One of the most iconic players in Premier League history and arguably the greatest Dutch player the division has seen, Dennis Bergkamp was the influential heartbeat of Arsene Wenger’s great Arsenal teams.

Arriving after a difficult spell in Italian football with Inter Milan, Bergkamp lit up the Premier League with deft touches and stunning goals, forming lethal partnerships with Ian Wright and later Thierry Henry.

Named as the PFA Player of the Year and FWA Footballer of the Year after helping the club to a domestic double in 1998, he would make 423 appearances during a decade in north London, scoring 120 goals and being voted as the second greatest player in Arsenal’s history.

He won three Premier League titles and four FA Cups during a glittering career in English football at the Gunners, where a statue of the forward now fittingly sits outside their Emirates Stadium home.

Jimmy Floyd-Hasselbaink

Hasselbaink would spend nine seasons playing in the Premier League at various clubs, scoring prolifically during spells at Leeds United, Chelsea and Middlesbrough either side of a single season at Atletico Madrid.

Signed by Leeds from Boavista for just £2m, he would impress immediately scoring 16 goals in his first campaign, before a haul of 18 the following season saw him earn a share of the Golden Boot alongside Liverpool’s Michael Owen and Aston Villa’s Dwight Yorke.

A contract dispute would see him leave Elland Road for Atletico Madrid, though he would return just a year later following a prolific season in Spain to join Chelsea in a club record £15m deal.

It would be at Stamford Bridge where Hasselbaink would play the finest football of his Premier League career, his powerful shot and ruthless finishing seeing him score 70 league goals in just 137 appearances, winning a second Golden Boot award in the process.

He would later join Middlesbrough after being squeezed out by Roman Abramovich’s investment in west London, helping the club to the UEFA Cup final in 2006 and scoring 33 goals in all competitions for the North East side over a two season spell.

The Dutchman would retire after short stints at Charlton and Cardiff, though he would prove to be a huge fan’s favourite at a succession of clubs, having scored 127 goals in 288 Premier League appearances.

Ruud van Nistelrooy

Manchester United had to wait a year to secure the services of prolific forward Ruud Van Nistelrooy after a major knee injury delayed his move from PSV, but the then British-record signing certainly proved worth the wait.

The Dutchman would prove to be one of the most lethal finishers in Premier League history, scoring 150 goals in 219 appearances in all competitions for Sir Alex Ferguson’s side.

During that time he won the Premier League, FA Cup and League Cup, being named PFA Player of the Year in 2001/02 and Premier League Player of the Season in 2002/03.

Winner of the Premier League’s Golden Boot during that latter season, he would also finish as the top scorer in the Champions League three times in five campaigns during his time at Old Trafford, Van Nistelrooy the sixth-highest goalscorer in the competition’s history.

Having fallen out with an emerging Cristiano Ronaldo, Van Nistelrooy was sold to Real Madrid in 2006.

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Robin van Persie

Van Persie would join Arsenal as a youngster but enjoyed very little team success during an eight-year stay in north London, winning just a solitary FA Cup despite scoring 132 goals in all competitions for Arsene Wenger’s side.

A brilliantly talented player with a wand of a left foot, his finest campaign would be his final season as a Gunner, scoring 30 Premier League goals to win the Golden Boot and being named as the PFA Player of The Year and FWA Footballer of the Year for 2011/12.

Seeking an opportunity to win major silverware, however, Manchester United would capitalise on Van Persie’s contract situation to bring the player to Old Trafford, where he would inspire the club to a record-extending 20th league title during a superb debut campaign.

Van Persie would hit 26 league goals to win a second successive Golden Boot, the Dutchman scoring 58 goals in 105 appearances in all competitions for the Red Devils before leaving to join Turkish side Fenerbahce in 2015.

Dirk Kuyt

Perhaps the least talented player on this list, but a player who made up for his lesser abilities with an industrious work-rate that soon made him a firm fans’ favourite on Merseyside.

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Kuyt arrived at Liverpool in the summer of 2006 with a reputation as a prolific goalscorer following his time in the Netherlands, and whilst he would fail to replicate those feats, he would prove to be a big-game player throughout his six-year spell in English football.

Converted to a hard-working right-winger by Rafael Benitez, Kuyt would score 71 goals in 285 appearances for the Reds, including netting in both the Champions League and League Cup final in addition to a memorable close-range hat-trick against arch-rivals Manchester United.

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