If you’re bored with the ongoing transfer relationship between Manchester United and Jadon Sancho, consider a new name.
The Evening Standard reports that United are interested in Lille defender Zeki Celik.
Inter Milan, Tottenham, Arsenal and even Norwich looking for replacements for Max Aarons in a sale are also credited with interest in Celik.
Why is Celik so popular and what could he offer Manchester United?
(Photo by John Berry / Getty Images)
1) Celik is a right-back who plays for Lille who has just won the French title and has started 28 league games in the process.
2) He is a Turkish international who will take part in Euro 2020. He has 19 caps and two goals.
3) Celik, 24, has two years left from his current contract with Lille. He came to the club from Istanbulspor in 2018.
4) He scored four goals as a right-back last season, including one in the Europa League against Celtic.
5) Celik could happily go on as he makes £ 15,000 a week on his salary, a paltry number compared to other title winners in Europe’s top five leagues.
How much would it cost?
The Celik Evening Standard report could cost as little as £ 13 million.
This is because his contract still runs for two years and Lille are ready to take advantage of their players after already selling Boubakary Soumare to Leicester City.
It’s fair to be skeptical whether United is actually interested or whether the club’s name is simply thrown together with a host of others. At its price, it’s worth taking control.
What are its strengths and weaknesses?
FBRef’s scouting report shows Celik is among the top one percent of full-backs in the top five leagues in Europe when it comes to putting opponents in the middle third of the pitch under pressure. He’s in the top three percent for winning tackles in that zone.
This shows his forward thinking and proactive approach to defense.
In the case of passes in the last third, it ranks among the top 14 percent. However, Celik only provided two assists last season.
Celik received eight warnings and gave an average of 1.9 fouls per game, the most of all full-backs in Ligue 1, reports WhoScored.com.
Should United take a step?
With a price tag of only £ 13 million, Celik could be considered a low risk game of chance well worth taking.
However, given United’s current weaknesses, he might not be a good fit.
(Photo by LOIC VENANCE / AFP via Getty Images)
United are looking for a right-back who is savvy in attacking, and none with fewer assists than Aaron Wan-Bissaka, who scored five goals last season.
Celik’s tendency to give away free kicks is a recipe for disaster as United’s weaknesses are in defending set pieces.
This is a move United should pass in favor of alternative options. Kieran Trippier is one such player United could target as a right-back, with the MEN reporting interest, and he would be a more sensible move given his experience and attacking strength.
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