An update has emerged on Newcastle United and their interest in Fiorentina centre-back Nikola Milenkovic…
According to the Daily Mail, the Magpies are now plotting a move to sign the central defender to bolster their squad this month.
The report claims that it will take £32m for the Italian side to part ways with him, whilst Southampton’s Jan Bednarek is also mentioned as an option.
Eddie Howe could find his own Nemanja Vidic in a deal to sign the Serbian colossus, as the Serie A beast has previously been compared to his compatriot.
In reaction to those comparisons, Milenkovic said: “It is magnificent to be compared to the likes of Vidic and I have to stay humble with both feet firmly on the ground.
“Vidic was one hell of a player while I am in the fledgeling stage of my career and hence I have to keep working hard in order to climb that mountain. Krstajic’s praise means so much because it’s an impetus to keep improving.”
Pol Lirola previously lauded the defender’s talents as “extraordinary” and his statistics in Italy back up that claim as he has consistently impressed.
In the Serie A this season, he has averaged a SofaScore rating of 7.13. He has won an excellent 71% of his duels overall in the division, making 3.1 tackles and interceptions per game along with 3.2 clearances – as per SofaScore.
This shows that he has the ability to perform consistently to a high standard at the top level. Therefore, he could improve Newcastle’s defence and hand them a greater chance of keeping clean sheets and picking up points in the Premier League, aiding their bid to avoid relegation.
At the age of 24, he also has plenty of time left to develop and progress further as a player. This means that he could fulfil his potential and become the new Vidic and end his career as a Premier League icon by delivering the goods over the course of a number of years at Newcastle.
Therefore, Howe must ensure that the club are able to match the £32m price tag Fiorentina have placed on his head to get a deal done in the coming days. The comparisons to Vidic and his performance data in the Serie A suggest that he could be a strong addition to the team and they must work hard to bring him to St. James’ Park.