In a deal that may turn out to be the club’s signing of the season, Fabian Schar’s £3million move to Newcastle back in the summer, as reported by Sky Sports, is looking like daylight robbery for the Magpies right now, and will have rival teams left scratching their heads as to why they didn’t sign him themselves.
Following the Switzerland international’s arrival from Deportivo La Coruna, he has recently emerged as a key man in Rafa Benitez’s lineup having endured a slow start on Tyneside. Schar made his first start for the Magpies early on in the campaign, lining up to face Chelsea in a game which Newcastle ultimately lost 2-1 at St James’ Park.
After that start at the end of August, however, the 27-year-old did not appear in a league game again until November – since then, he has grabbed his chance with both hands and cemented himself as one of the first names on Benitez’s team sheet.
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He has been named as Whoscored’s Man of the Match on three occasions over the course of the last two months, picking up a rating of 8.29 for his performance against Everton at Goodison Park, as well as 7.7 and 9.08 ratings against Fulham and Cardiff respectively.
Schar proved his versatility in the recent 4-2 FA Cup win over Blackburn, in which he started in an unfamiliar midfield position and bossed it against the Championship side. That performance appeared to give him some confidence, as he followed it up with a two-goal haul against fellow relegation strugglers Cardiff to give Newcastle the edge in a crucial six-pointer.
The Swiss defender, who helped his country into the last 16 of the World Cup back in the summer, displayed his immense quality on the ball with an outstanding goal of the season contender to open the scoring against the Bluebirds. Schar ran 50 yards with the ball before slotting into the bottom left corner, and then went on to tap in a predatory effort to wrap up the points for the Magpies.
In the modern day market, signing Schar for just £3m has to be considered as one of the deals of the season, and one of the Magpies’ best signings in recent years.
As much as the fans seem to hate Mike Ashley and his reluctance to spend money in the transfer market, a deal for Schar would most likely have been overlooked had Benitez been given more money to spend – every cloud has a silver lining, after all.