An update has emerged on Newcastle United and their pursuit of a new midfielder in the summer transfer window…
According to TuttoJuve, the Magpies are one of the clubs eyeing up a potential swoop to sign Arthur Melo from Juventus.
The report claims that the Toon and West Ham are both interested in a deal to sign the Brazil international after Valencia confirmed that they do not have the money available to afford him.
It has been previously reported that he has a price tag in the region of €40m (£34m), although it remains to be seen how much Newcastle are willing to pay for him.
The club could find the dream replacement for their English metronome by snapping up a deal to sign Arthur in the coming weeks.
Shelvey has been ruled out for around 12 weeks with a hamstring injury and this has the potential to be a big blow to the side in the first half of the campaign.
In the Premier League last season, Allan Saint-Maximin was the only non-January signing with a higher average SofaScore rating than the central midfielder. Including the winter recruits, the ex-Liverpool man ranked fifth in the squad for ratings out of all players with 10+ appearances.
His passing ability was key to that as he completed 9.35 long passes per 90 – placing him in the 90th percentile in Europe’s top five leagues. He completed 80.2% of his passes in total as he dictated play for Howe from the middle of the park.
Arthur, meanwhile, completed 11.05 long passes per 90 for Juventus in the Serie A – placing him in the 97th percentile. He also had a pass completion success rate of 91.6% whilst also playing 7.39 passes into the final third – placing him in the top two percent of players in his position – compared to Shelvey’s 4.31 per 90.
The 26-year-old’s ability in possession has earned him high praise in the past, with former teammate Lionel Messi once stating:
“Those who came are very good. Arthur, I didn’t know that much about but he seems similar to Xavi. He’s very safe and trustworthy. He has the La Masia style. Playing short passes, without losing the ball, and he grasped it quickly, the dynamic of the team.”
This suggests that the Brazilian could be an upgrade on Shelvey because of his superior ability on the ball, with the midfielder proving in Italy that he is highly reliable on the ball whilst being able to progress it into dangerous areas and spread the play with longer passes.
Therefore, he could be the dream replacement for the Englishman whilst he misses the next few months due to his hamstring injury.