PL giants in race for exciting Lille youngster?

By Soccer Blog | Apr 9, 2020

If reports from the French and Spanish papers are to be believed, several big Premiership clubs will be in a battle to sign young Lille midfielder Boubakary Soumare this summer. While Newcastle made an unsuccessful bid for him in January, the race now appears to be heating up, with the likes of Chelsea, Arsenal and Liverpool all interested in snapping him up. Spain may also be an alternative, with Real Madrid monitoring his progress closely.

Bouba S3

While one could argue that Liverpool are loaded with midfielders, the likes of Jordan Henderson, Gini Wijnaldum and James Milner are already the wrong side of 30 (Milner) or will turn 30 (Hendo, Gini) very soon. With Naby Keita also getting injured often and Adam Lallana likely to leave the club soon, it could make sense for the Reds to sign another young athletic defensive midfielder- Soumare is only 21, and has already been capped at all youth levels between U16 and U21 by France.

Soumare’s height (6 ft 2 in) also makes him an attractive proposition for Chelsea, another club who would like a big midfielder to sit in front of their defence. The Blues, like Liverpool, are also loaded with midfielders, but the prospect of signing a player who, in the eyes of many, could emerge as a bigger version of N’Golo Kante, will be tempting.

Soumare is certainly in demand, and it appears to be only a matter of time before he leaves Lille. If you reckon you could predict his future club, be sure to use this website before having a wager on his next destination. A fee of around £40-45m could be enough to land his services- the youngster is currently contracted to LOSC till the end of the 2021/22 season.

Manchester United and their new boss Ole Gunnar Solskjaer have of course been linked with several young defensive midfielders, and Soumare is the latest addition to that list. With Nemanja Matic not getting any younger and Paul Pogba likely to exit this summer, a move for Soumare could become a real possibility.

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Newcastle, as mentioned above, were very interested in signing him in the winter, and even attempted to get Allan Saint-Maximin to have a talk with Soumare, but were unsuccesful in their endeavours. There were rumours that Saint-Maximin even FaceTimed the young medio to show the club’s facilities, but Soumare, who reportedly had his eyes set on moving to a top-six club across the Channel, politely rejected the Magpies.

Soumare started his youth career with Paris FC and then moved to the PSG academy in 2011. He joined Lille in 2017 and has already racked up more than 50 appearances for Les Dogues. He also played in all six of their Champions League games this season- Lille were in a tough CL group alongside Chelsea, last season’s semi-finalists Ajax and Spanish giants Valencia.

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