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Newcastle: Hakan Calhanoglu could be Howe’s own De Bruyne

Newcastle United have a couple of days left to complete their remaining business in the summer transfer window…

The Magpies have brought in four players so far and may look to further strengthen their squad before Thursday night’s deadline.

Nick Pope, Sven Botman, Alexander Isak and Matt Targett have all come through the door on permanent deals, and a creative midfielder appears to be on their to-do list.

It was recently reported that the Toon are eyeing up a swoop to sign Hakan Calhanoglu from Inter as an alternative to Lucas Paqueta, who has signed for Premier League rivals West Ham.

Inter are said to be open to selling any player for the right price, and that could open the door to a late deal for the Turkey international.

Newcastle must now land the £150k-per-week wizard as Eddie Howe could land his own version of Manchester City magician Kevin De Bruyne by bringing him to St James’ Park.

The Belgian recently caught the eye against the Magpies as he created three ‘big chances’ and registered one assist in the 3-3 draw earlier this month.

He is a world-class creator who can unlock any defence with his stunning range of passes and intelligence in possession. Out of all of the players in his position in Europe’s top five leagues over the last 365 days, De Bruyne ranks in the 99th percentile for assists, xG assisted and shot-creating actions per 90.

This shows that he is one of the best players in his position when it comes to consistently creating high-quality chances.

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Calhanoglu could come in at St James’ Park and provide a similar level of creativity after catching the eye in Serie A.

His former Milan manager Stefano Pioli, who once hailed him as “exceptional”, previously heaped praise on his build-up play, saying“Calhanoglu is a leader of this team. He’s a leader on the pitch, he’s an intelligent player. Lately, we have faced teams that have closed the spaces and therefore, sometimes, I have had to lower him even though I want to keep him high.

“He knows how to marry perfectly with the game of his teammates. I have great respect for him and with intelligent players, you can play great games. He has the qualities to have some more goals.”

Like De Bruyne, the Turkish gem ranks in the 99th percentile for assists, xG assisted and shot-creating actions per 90 out of all of the players in his position in Europe’s top five leagues over the last 365 days, with FBRef also listing the pair as being stylistically similar.

The 28-year-old could therefore be a world-class creator for Newcastle, as he has proven over the last year to be one of the best attacking midfielders around at slicing open defences and creating goals for his team-mates.

Newcastle must now push to land Calhanoglu in the final couple of days of the transfer window in order to give Howe his own version of De Bruyne on Tyneside.

Article title: Newcastle: Hakan Calhanoglu could be Howe’s own De Bruyne

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