Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Update On Newcastle United’s Pursuit Of This Ligue 1 Defender: Right Fit For Howe?

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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 report, RMC offered an update on Newcastle United’s pursuit of Ligue 1 defender Sven Botman. It is understood that the Magpies have made several offers to secure the signature of the Dutch centre-back with their latest bid believed to be worth around €35m.

Botman’s Impressive Run Of Form In French Football

Botman has given a good account of himself at the centre of Lille’s backline during this campaign. The 21-year-old has scored one goal and provided one assist in 17 matches for the French club this season across multiple competitions.

The former Ajax defensive ace has been a rock at the back for Lille based on his average of 1.0 tackles, 0.8 interceptions and 4.6 clearances per 90 minutes in Ligue 1. He has even been tidy when distributing the ball from the back after making 85.6% of his attempted passes in the French top tier (stats via whoscored).

Newcastle United (Sven Botman)
Lille’s Dutch midfielder Sven Botman reacts during an international club friendly football match between SL Benfica and Lille OSC at the Algarve stadium in Portimao on July 22, 2021. (Photo by PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA / AFP) (Photo by PATRICIA DE MELO MOREIRA/AFP via Getty Images)
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Is Botman The Right Fit For Newcastle United?

Botman is usually quick to spot the danger and doesn’t mind clearing his lines when required. He is a solid tackler of the ball and can time his challenges well to make a few crucial interceptions inside his half. The Dutch centre-half can use his towering 1.95m to dominate the opposition attackers in the air.

Therefore, Newcastle have a lot of reasons not to give up their pursuit of Botman this month. The Lille whizkid could be an excellent signing for the Magpies as he has what it takes to help them get out of relegation danger in the second half of this campaign.

More importantly, Botman will be a great option for the Tyneside outfit in the long run as he has the potential to become a future star at the highest level. At 21, the Dutch prospect is only going to get better with each season which fits Newcastle’s profile perfectly as they are looking to build a strong team for the future. Thus, Eddie Howe should think about making another move to bring Botman to St. James’ Park before the end of this winter transfer window.

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