Leon Goretzka has been a subject of some serious transfer talk in the summer, especially after his thunderous performance in the Confederations Cup. The 22-year old emerged as one of the top performers in the said competition and he is surely one of the biggest gainers of Germany’s test with the reserve teams. So much, even Real Madrid are now getting in on the act to sign the talented German midfielder. According to Spanish news magazine Don Balon, Los Blancos are seriously considering a move for Leon Goretzka, and thus join the likes of Bayern Munich, Arsenal and Tottenham in the race to sign the Schalke midfielder.
Goretzka is now into the final year of his contract with Die Konigsblauen and it’s very unlikely that he will sign a contract extension with the Royal Blues. An ever-present figure in the Schalke midfield, Goretzka will be available for cheap as well, with a reported fee of 15m euros, apparently enough to convince the Bundesliga outfit to sell the 22-year-old.
Goretzka is a mature midfielder who plays ahead of his age. At 22 years of age, he is the heart and soul of the Schalke midfield. Goretzka normally operates as a central defensive midfielder but is very versatile when it comes to acting as a central attacking midfielder or even a number eight. Standing at 1.89m, he is fairly tall and uses his physicality to dominate the opposing midfielders.
Defensively, he is a well-drilled midfielder, who can cover the backline extremely well. He is not afraid to act doggedly and make blocks and crucial tackles, which is a great trait for a defensive midfielder. His height also allows him to gain an extra advantage in headed duels whilst being a great target for the set piece takers as well. Goretzka is also a very smart customer and has the awareness to make the crucial interceptions. He made a sensational 80 interceptions last season, averaging almost 3 per game. It’s not just the interceptions, where he excels at, Goretzka is also a great tackler and averages about 5 tackles per game.
Considering the fact that Schalke are a counter attacking team, who are rarely given the time with the ball, Leon Gorezka is a composed midfielder. But the most important factor about the 22-year old is his willingness to provide creativity for his side going forward, something he really worked on in recent times. He had created 34 chances for his last season, bettered only by Johannes Geis in the Schalke squadron.
[All stats taken from Squawka]
His lack of individualism remains his only significant weakness. He would really struggle if there’s no one else in midfield helping along. For example, Johannes Geis plays a pivotal part in helping Goretzka and thus, the two midfielders bond a strong pair in the middle of the pitch. Likewise for the German National Team, where he had the support of Sebastian Rudy in the Confederations Cup. While on the other hand, he should look to improve his passing a bit, attaining just about average 78% pass completion rate with Schalke last season.
However flattering the interest from European Champions Real Madrid may it be, a move to Premier League still seems to be the best bet for Leon Goretzka. Real Madrid already have classy midfield individuals such as Toni Kroos, Luka Modric who are backed up by another range of talents such as Mateo Kovacic, Isco and Marco Asensio. Same can be said for Bayern as well, who have Arturo Vidal, Sebastian Rudy, Thiago Alcantara so it’s really doubtful if he can manage any game time with both the clubs mentioned.
However, moving to somewhere like Arsenal or Tottenham can make a telling difference to his career ahead. Both Premier League outfits can offer regular game time to Goretzka and moreover, he will have the chance to make his presence felt in one of the best leagues in the world.
There is no significant bad signs over Leon Goretzka’s possible transfer in the future. Even if he moves to Real Madrid or Bayern Munich, he can still substantially challenge for a place in the starting eleven. And given his wide range of experience even at this age. He seems ready for the next step in his career.
Anas Ali Molla
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