Newcastle United have been linked with a summer move for Atletico Madrid defender Mario Hermoso.
According to a recent report from Mundo Deportivo, the Magpies are one of the clubs interested in signing the Spaniard this summer.
Having worked his way through Real Madrid’s youth ranks, the 27-year-old joined Atletico from Espanyol in 2019. Since then, Hermoso has gone on to make 95 appearances for Diego Simeone’s team across all competitions, chipping in with four goals and two assists along the way.
In terms of his defensive talent, in his 26 league games last season, the centre-back ended up winning 15 tackles and making 29 blocks, 36 interceptions and 53 clearances.
In addition, only two other players ended the season with a higher passing accuracy percentage than Hermoso (85.9%), highlighting how impressive he is with and without the ball.
With reports recently emerging that the Magpies have agreed a deal to sign Lille defender Sven Botman, adding Hermoso to the squad could give Eddie Howe the chance to create a formidable centre-back duo at St James’ Park.
Throughout his two previous Ligue 1 seasons with Lille, the Dutchman has racked up 55 successful tackles, 100 blocks, 76 interceptions and 313 clearances, highlighting his defensive credentials in a similar vein to the Atletico figure.
With this in mind and with both Botman and Hermoso having experience of playing in Europe’s club competitions, this is the sort of pedigree that Howe would presumably want in his team to propel Newcastle into Europe at some point in the near future.
Taking all this into account, if Simeone’s side are willing to negotiate a deal to sell the 27-year-old this summer, Newcastle and PIF should definitely explore the option to add another defensive figure to their ranks.
However, with this report claiming that other clubs, including Inter Milan, are looking to sign the Spaniard, the Magpies could have a challenge on their hands when it comes to getting him to St James’ Park.