According to a recent report by Chronicle Live, Newcastle United have completed the out-of-window signing of former Arsenal defender Stefan O’Connor, on a short term deal. The youngster was released by the Magpies in the summer, but after just a few months, the Newcastle United staff seem to have had a change of heart. The 22-year-old was reportedly spotted at some of the Magpies’ U-23 fixtures off late as well.
Who is Stefan O’Connor?
London born and bred, Stefan Ramone O’Connor was identified as a future prospect by the Crystal Palace academy, when he was still very young. After training with the Palace team until 2010, he was scouted and signed up by Arsenal, and they must have hoped to develop him into a top centre-half. After moving to The Emirates on a free transfer, he made his way up the ranks and eventually found himself at the Gunners’ U-21 setup, which he represented 32 times.
After a couple of uninspiring loan spells, where he notched up just eight appearances in total, he was eventually released by the Gunners, in the summer of 2017. Newcastle United were quick to snatch him up though, and at Tyneside, the youngster played in 31 matches for the reserve squad and even managed to score a goal.
What Is Stefan O’Connor’s Skill-Set?
The youngster was developed up by the Gunners as a traditional centre-half, but he is capable of filling in at right-back or defensive-midfield as well. He is exceptionally tall and can be a massive threat in the air. He tends to win most of the headers that come his way – a boon to any side struggling to deal with set-pieces.
He is quite pacy on the ball and can pick a pass as well. Only 22, given the right kind of training, the youngster could still develop into a top Premier League player. The experience that he picked up at a big club like Arsenal will undoubtedly go a long way in moulding his career.
What Is Stefan O’Connor’s Current Situation At Newcastle?
Although it has been suggested that his return to Newcastle is now complete, he is currently recovering from a slight knock that could keep him out for a while. Newcastle United are said to be taking care of the player; offering him the treatment he needs to heal and get back to full match fitness.
Though there hasn’t been too much reasoning provided regarding the signing itself, it’s safe to assume that he’s not going to displace the likes of Jamaal Lascelles and Fabian Schar from the first-team anytime soon. While Steve Bruce could do nicely with reinforcements in most positions, a centre-half who they deemed ‘not good enough’ just a few months ago, certainly won’t fit the bill.
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