Newcastle United closing in on this Dutch left-back: Can he add more quality to the squad?

Transfer story

Rafael Benitez masterminded an emphatic season for Newcastle United in the 2016-17 campaign of Sky Bet Championship. Under his tutelage, the Magpies lifted the Championship silverware which granted them an automatic promotion spot back to the top tier of English football.

However, the Spaniard isn’t unfamiliar with the animosity which Premier League would have on offer and is doing a lot of chores behind the scenes to bolster his squad before his troops venture into their upcoming league campaign. One of the latest players he is believed to be monitoring is Sporting CP’s left-back Marvin Zeegelaar.

Career so far

Zeegelaar emerged through the youth ranks of Volendam and Ajax, before being handed a place in the senior side of the latter. He didn’t rise to prominence pretty early in his career and it was during his time at Rio Ave which enabled him to finally have a breakthrough season.

Primeira Liga outfit, Sporting CP, were quick to lure him to Estadio Jose Alvalade in 2016 and the Dutchman mustered a productive spell with the Lions last season and no wonder he has caught the attention of the former Real Madrid boss who is itching to bring him to St. James’ Park.

Player stats

The 26-year-old managed 20 appearances last season in the Portuguese top division, bagging 2 assists to his name. Besides, he made 2.6 tackles, 2 interceptions and 1 clearance per game on an average.

Despite the fact that he is still miles away from becoming a household name, he has done quite a decent job for his current employers and let’s not forget to state that he collected 5 Champions League starts as well. (Stats via Whoscored)


Zeegelaar is predominantly a left-back with a commanding presence and can efficiently ply his trade on the left-hand side of the midfield too. He has decent pace to run up and down the flanks, passes the ball really well and is rarely caught losing possession. The former Rio Ave man is a good tackler and interceptor and takes proactive measures to clear the danger.

While crossing the ball into the box isn’t one of his strongest suits, he caters to the defensive aspects in a shrewd manner and creates momentum whilst going forward with the level-headedness that he shows in getting along with the winger and midfielders.

Good enough?

Benitez’s gamble with Achraf Lazaar didn’t pay off the dividends and with Zeegelaar, the gaffer might face a similar output. Zeegelaar lacks Premier League experience and with the availability of Paul Dummett already in his arsenal, it would be a buy to beef up the quantity and not quality.

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