Fortuna Sittard Seal Agreement With 27-Year-Old Hellraiser

Dutch-born hellraiser Alessio da Cruz has penned a multi-year deal with Fortuna Sittard, after leaving Serie B strugglers Feralpisalò.

The Cape Verde international has been dogged by controversy throughout his career and will be looking to get a regular run in the Fortuna team after an injury-hit spell in Italy.

“I know the club has been following me for a long time,” said the 27-year-old. “I am happy that this time it has become concrete and that I have signed a multi-year contract. I can’t wait to get on the pitch and try to secure my place in the team.”

“Alessio is a player who has been on our radar for quite some time,” added Americo Branco Fortuna’s technical director. “Given the situation he found himself without a club, it was the right time for us to sign him. With his 27 years, he adds both experience to the selection, and the opportunity to develop himself even further as a player.”

The player has had a torrid time in Italy, suffering an ankle injury that ruled him out for three months. Relegation-haunted Feralpisalò cancelled his contract on January 16th, after he made a single appearance.

Early in his career, much was expected of the former Ajax youth international, who turned pro with FC Twente. He appeared three times for the senior team but was labelled a ‘troublesome boy‘ by the manager, and found himself out on loan with FC Dordrecht.

He later moved to Italian side Novara and impressed, scoring five times in six months, but that discipline trouble followed him, as he was sent off just six minutes after coming on in a game. Still, his ability earned him a call-up to the Dutch U20 side, and a €3 million move to Parma, despite interest from Arsenal.

He had a loan spell with Ascoli, but those rumours of disruption persisted, and he was sent off three times in just six months. That caused the owner to distance himself from the player, saying – “Today’s performance did not reflect the expectations of the Club and the Ascoli Calcio project. The Company itself distances itself from the conduct of Alessio Da Cruz. The umpteenth expulsion and the behaviour – not in line with the code of ethics of Ascoli Calcio – taken on the pitch and in the presence of fans, who followed the team once again, force the Juventus club to definitively distance itself from the player.”

He joined English Championship side Sheffield Wednesday in 2020 but appeared just 15 times before returning to Parma and he has since had a nomadic career, taking in loan spells in Italy, the Netherlands, and Mexico. In 2022, after being released by I Crociati, he turned up in Belgium with Mechelen, where his form earned him a call-up to Cape Verde’s national team, despite a further red card.

He joins a Fortuna side sitting in the middle of the Eredivisie pack, one of five teams separated by a single point.

Site Opinion

There’s no doubting da Cruz’s ability, nor his potential. He’s still only 27, meaning he has plenty of time ahead of him in his career. His recent injury issues have been troublesome, but perhaps not quite so much as some of that early career ill-discipline.

If Fortuna can get him fit, perhaps the years will have mellowed him a little. If so, they might have bagged a top player, with real ability. However, if he struggles to settle, it could be he’s on he move once again in six months. After all, jumping from the bottom of Serie B to the top flight of Dutch football does seem like a big leap.

 

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