Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Eredivisie Defender Is On Newcastle United’s Radar: Should Bruce Bring Him To St. James’ Park?

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Abhinab Ghosh
A 26-year-old sports writer and an aspiring football coach who has road-tripped across the Scottish Highlands, but has never been to Wales. Sucker for cliff-hangers and catchy riffs. Known to be a grunger and not to be a stranger.

In a recent print edition, De Telegraaf has stated that Vitesse defender Danilho Doekhi is on Newcastle United‘s radar. However, it is believed that the Magpies could face competition from Fulham, Norwich City, Atalanta and Rangers in pursuit of the Dutch centre-half (transcripted and translated by Sport Witness).

Doekhi’s Excellent Season In Dutch Football

Doekhi is having a solid season at GelreDome as he has put in a series of commanding performances at the centre of the Vitesse backline. The Rotterdam-born defensive ace has participated in 34 matches for the Dutch outfit this term, finding the back of the net once and securing one assist in multiple competitions.

The former Ajax youngster has given a good account of himself by averaging 2.1 tackles, 1.7 interceptions and 3.0 clearances per 90 minutes in the Dutch Eredivisie this season. He has even distributed the ball remarkably well after making 85.9% of his attempted passes in league football (stats via whoscored).

The way Doekhi has been playing this season, it is no wonder that Newcastle are among several clubs showing interest in securing his services. The 22-year-old has the potential to grow into a world-class player in his position someday, so the Magpies would be wise to engineer a move for him this summer.

Danilho Doekhi is on Newcastle United's radar (Doekhi is seen in the picture)
ENSCHEDE, 03-04-2021, Grolsch Veste, football, Dutch Eredivisie, season 2020 / 2021, Vitesse player Danilho Doekhi during the match FC Twente – Vitesse 1-2 Twente – Vitesse PUBLICATIONxNOTxINxNED x11324305x Copyright:

Should The Magpies Bring Doekhi To St. James’ Park?

Standing at 1.90m, Doekhi is a towering presence inside his half and often relies on his strength and power to beat the opposition in the air. He has developed himself into a reliable presence in central defence as he has got the hunger to earn possession back for his team. Plus, the five-time Netherlands Under-21 international can clear his lines when required and is usually a good passer of the ball as well when playing his way out from the back.

Therefore, it makes a lot of sense for the Magpies to bring Doekhi to St. James’ Park when the transfer window reopens later this year. At 22, he is a player on the rise and would have a lot of resale value in the future. If Bruce can find a way to get a deal done for Doekhi on the cheap, he should consider doing so as the Dutch youngster has the makings of a top talent and could thrive playing in the Premier League where he can test himself against some of the best strikers in European football.

All in all, Newcastle should consider luring Doekhi to Tyneside in this off-season as he would help them steer clear of relegation trouble in the Premier League next season. Moreover, the Dutch defensive powerhouse would offer some healthy competition for Jamaal Lascelles, Fabian Schar and Ciaran Clark in the coming years. Doekhi will also serve as a decent long-term replacement for Federico Fernandez whose contract runs out at the end of this campaign.

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