Monday, June 27, 2022

Newcastle United To Rival Arsenal For This Serie A Midfielder: Good Fit For The Magpies?

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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, Corriere dello Sport (subscription required) stated that Newcastle United are set to rival Arsenal for Napoli midfielder Fabian Ruiz this off-season. It has been claimed that the Magpies will have to compete with the Gunners as well as Manchester United and Manchester City in the chase for the Spain international this summer.

Ruiz’s Decent Numbers At Naples Last Season

Ruiz had a good season with Napoli after he managed to put in a handful of impressive performances at the heart of their midfield. The Spain international played in 38 matches for Luciano Spaletti’s team in the previous campaign, finding the back of the net on seven occasions and picking up five assists across various competitions.

The 26-year-old anchored the midfield really well by averaging 1.7 tackles, 0.7 interceptions, 1.0 clearances, 1.3 shots and 1.0 key passes per 90 minutes in Serie A football. He was even accurate when interchanging possession with his teammates from midfield after making 90.5% of his attempted passes in the Italian top tier (stats via whoscored).

Newcastle United (Fabian Ruiz)
Fabian Ruiz of SSC Napoli during the Serie A match between SSC Napoli and US Sassuolo at Stadio Diego Armando Maradona on April 30, 2022 in Naples, Italy. (Photo by Francesco Pecoraro/Getty Images)
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Is Ruiz A Good Fit For Newcastle United This Summer?

Ruiz is a good tackler of the ball and can sense the danger quickly to make a few crucial interceptions for his side in midfield. The 15-time Spain international doesn’t mind clearing his lines at the back when the opposition are on the front foot.

He can shoot the ball well from long range and has got the vision to create some inviting chances in the final third. Hence, Ruiz will be an excellent fit for the Magpies as Eddie Howe is desperate to strengthen his midfield ahead of the new Premier League campaign.

The Spaniard has what it takes to help Newcastle United challenge for a top-six finish in English football next season. At 26, he still has a lot of room to grow as a footballer, so the Tyneside giants can expect to get the best out of him in the coming seasons.

However, it won’t be easy for Howe to find a way to win the race for Ruiz’s services. Furthermore, there are some question marks over whether the Napoli star can replicate his good form in England.

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