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Everything We Know About Micky van de Ven’s Undercover Agent Dad Marcel

Everything We Know About Micky van de Ven’s Undercover Agent Dad Marcel

Micky van de Ven scored his first goal at the Tottenham Hotspur stadium in rather spectacular fashion in the recent win over Nottingham Forest. That’s because his finish, a stunning left-footed bomber into the top corner, was the kind of goal you’d expect from someone like Robin van Persie than a centre-back.

Van de Ven has become a highly popular figure in his debut season at Tottenham. He’s been a combative defender renowned for his admirable speed, which helps him stand out in the Premier League. The 22-year-old has already broken through to the Netherland’s national team, making two appearances for them. He looks poised to be a part of Spurs’ backline for years to come and actually comes from a really fascinating background.

That is because Van de Ven’s father is not your ordinary, middle-class working parent. Marcel van de Ven’s profession is almost the complete opposite of the one followed by his son. Marcel was a former undercover policeman in the Netherlands. He had worked for a police unit at a secret location in the country and helped to track down and arrest the most notorious criminals in the country.

Micky has explained how weird his upbringing was in terms of having to adapt to his father’s job, telling the Guardian: “He was an undercover agent and he was working on the highest criminals in Holland. He was doing his work with some other people – I don’t know how many but it was not that many. They were based somewhere in the Netherlands and every day he was there. He came back late and always [in] different cars, you know what I mean?”

Marcel van de Ven discreetly did his job as an undercover agent, but has strayed onto a bit of a different career in recent years. He’s now become a pretty notable TV star who has acted in quite a few TV shows in the Netherlands. Marcel has appeared as a cop in the popular Dutch TV show ‘Ferry’. This is based on the rise of a fictional Dutch druglord Ferry Bouman and Van de Ven senior is shown as one of those trying to apprehend Bouman.

In 2018, he also appeared in an episode of the Dutch Crime-Drama show ‘Smeris’. But Van de Ven’s reputation as a TV star really started to soar once he was roped in as one of the lead characters for the Dutch reality TV show ‘Hunted’. This show was actually inspired by the Channel 4 series (also named Hunted) that first aired in 2015. He has appeared in over 40 different episodes in this TV show, which involves him ‘acting’ and also putting his real-life experience of apprehending criminals as an undercover cop to good use.

Basically, ‘Hunted’ shows different scenarios where the cops (often featuring Marcel) have to catch different contestants – who are tasked to be on the run and evade the grasp of these professionals. Micky had an interesting way of describing the entire thing, explaining: “It’s like … I don’t know what happens … the dad or the mum take a kid out of nowhere to another country without talking to the other parent and then my dad and his team … they go there and they make sure that the kid is coming back.”

But Papa Van de Ven also appears to be a really sophisticated man not just focused on using his skills for one line of work. He has also become an author who has already published two books, both in the Dutch language. His first work, Onder de Radar (or ‘Below the Radar’) is a fictional crime/thriller that was published in January 2020.

He also published a non-fiction biography book named De Kooi (or The Cage) back in June 2020 too. In this book, he detailed the stories from his time as an uncover agent – claiming in the description ‘For six years I dealt with matters of life and death. Liquidations, drug trafficking, terrorism, hostage takings and kidnappings, murders that seemed unsolvable: I’ve seen it all.’

Marcel is now set to publish another fictional novel, De Prijs (The Prize) on May 14, 2024 – which is going to be another crime drama revolving around an undercover agent’s attempts to shut down a notorious drug ring. Apart from this, Marcel is also a regular part of a Dutch podcast ‘True Crime Pros’ where he discusses the lengths that undercover agents must go to excel in their jobs.

Micky van de Ven has credited his tough-as-nails father for playing a key part in his success as a footballer. He recalled a key advance that Marcel gave him just when he was about to join Wolfsburg in 2021 from the Dutch club Volendam, stating: “My dad was always saying, like in the warm-up, just enjoy what you see, the people, the vibe of the stadium, everything. Then, after you go in and come back out, just switch on. Accept everything that’s going on around you because you know it’s going to happen and you can’t do anything about it. It’s what I’ve done. I know it’s going to be chaos. But just do your job.”

Well, the Tottenham Hotspur defender has definitely learnt how to do his job perfectly and become one fo the best young defenders in Europe. Marcel, on the other hand, continues to do something he excels at – which is being an undercover agent on TV or other assignments.