According to reports in the Daily Mirror, Newcastle United are ready to battle Premier League rivals Bournemouth in the race to bring Hamburg midfielder Lewis Holtby back to England.
Well, despite struggling to make an impression during two years with Tottenham Hotspur earlier in his career, Holtby is available for £5m this summer according to the Daily Mirror, and both the Magpies and the Cherries are ready to swoop for the 26-year-old.
Toon boss Rafa Benitez is keen to strengthen his squad before the start of next season in the hope that his side can avoid being involved in another Premier League relegation battle having gone down just over a year ago, and he will be looking to add players to his team that have experience of playing in the English top flight.
The attacking midfielder scored one goal and provided a further six assists in 30 appearances in all competitions for Hamburg, as the Bundesliga outfit narrowly avoided finishing in the relegation play-off spot – they ended the campaign just a point above Wolfsburg.
While he did well from an attacking point of view, it was perhaps Holtby’s defensive contribution for his team that was most effective in his outings in the German top flight last term.
The 26-year-old won 63 tackles, as well as making 65 interceptions and 34 clearances.
That’s a good question.
Despite being a regular for Hamburg last term, Holtby’s contract with the Bundesliga outfit is due to run out next summer and according to ESPC FC, they are willing to listen to offers for him now rather than risk losing him for nothing next year.
The fact that he could be purchased for just £5m will certainly have caught the attention of Benitez as he looks to further strengthen his squad.
He certainly would be.
Last season, the likes of Mohamed Diame and Ayoze Perez played in the role behind Dwight Gayle in a 4-4-1-1 system, but it remains to be seen if Benitez will stick what that formation in the Premier League.
If he does, Holtby would certainly fit into the starting line-up deeper than the striker, but his defensive contribution last term also show that he could be utilised in the centre of the midfield four as well.