Monday, December 5, 2022

Newcastle United Join Race For Turkish Midfield Ace: The Right Choice For Benitez?

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Bishwaraj Bhattacharyya
Former athlete. Now a journalist hoping to cover football no matter the league or country.

Besiktas midfielder, Oğuzhan Özyakup is close to making a move to the Premier League and Newcastle United are the latest suitors to have expressed significant interest in the 25-year-old. A product of the Arsenal academy and once pegged to be the longtime replacement of Cesc Fabregas, Özyakup could not find his feet in English football and had to make a name in Turkey.

He has been prolific for Besiktas this season with 7 assists to his name while appearing in 32 of their games. Once being sold off for a meagre £400,000 fee, Ozyakup is now worth over £10m.

The 25-year-old has appeared in over 200 games for the Turkish outfit after making just couple for the Gunners senior team, under Arsene Wenger. He has lit up the Super Lig with his incredible skills with the ball. He has been capped for the Turkish national team 30 times and is one of the key successors of captain, Arda Turan.

The 25-year-old had a major hand in Besiktas midfield and has helped them to the Super Lig title for the past 2 seasons. He was handed over the captain’s armband earlier in the season and led the team to the first spot finish in the Champions League group stage this season. It is fair to say that Ozyakup has comfortably settled himself into European football and is a deserved of a call-up to the big times.

Newcastle United are on the line for major summer signings if they want to keep their Premier League appearance beyond the current season. Mike Ashley already disappointed the United faithful after acting really stingy with the transfer budget.

Rafael Benitez was forced to look for last-minute loan arrivals when not given the financial leverage to pursue players like Nicolai Jorgensen. Luckily, the Spaniard’s moves seem to have worked for the time being.

Kenedy has impressed on the wings and Martin Dubravka have taken over the goalkeeping responsibilities with great vigour. Islam Slimani has been an injury concern ever since his arrival but is full of goal scoring threat once on the pitch.

Read More: Newcastle United Manager Could Be On His Way To La Liga In Summer: Major Blow For The Magpies?

Ozyakup could be a key figure in the creative role alongside Jonjo Shelvey, Matt Ritchie and Ayoze Perez. He could bring a lot of offensive quality into the Magpies lineup and resurrect the club back into a top-half finish.

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