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With the business end of the season fast approaching, teams are well underway in planning their summer as the prospect of transfer window looms large. Identifying key targets will be high among the priorities for clubs as they scour the market for talents that could boost their team.
OGC Nice midfielder Wylan Cyprien has been identified as a prospective signing by Premier League stalwarts Tottenham Hotspur and Premier League hopefuls Newcastle United. The 21-year old has been absolutely brilliant for Nice and has been a key figure in their bid for the Ligue1 title this season. Owing to his majestic showing in the middle of the park, he has caught the attention of the two English sides.
So who is Wylan Cyprien? What will he bring to the table? Let’s have a look.
Born in 1995, Cyprien joined the academy of FC Paris as an eleven-year-old and spent two years there, before moving to the academy of RC Lens in 2008. He spent his formative years there, breaking into the U-19 and leaving a huge mark, that led to him making his first-team debut in January 2013. He became a regular thereafter at Lens and went on to make 112 appearances for the club, scoring 10 goals in the process and setting up 6 more.
In the summer of 2016, Cyprien switched to OGC Nice where he has thrived in the middle of the park. In his debut season for Nice, Cyprien has made 34 appearances scoring 9 goals and assisting 3 strikes across all competitions. Having come so close to bettering his entire career goal tally at Lens, Cyprien was dealt a bitter blow, as he suffered an anterior cruciate ligament injury just a day ago, that has ruled him out for the rest of the season.
Having made his debut for the France U-16 team back in 2010, Cyprien has represented the Les Bleus at all age groups from U-16 to U-21 side but is yet to break into the senior national team.
A central midfielder by trade Cyprien has been tasked with the box-to-box role at Nice where he has flourished boundlessly. Playing in front of a back three or a back four on occasions, the 22-year old has shown immense maturity and character. But his best attributes have generally been displayed when attacking.
His greatest strength is the excellent vision that he possesses, which he uses to pick out runs of his wingers. The fact that he has a success rate of 89.2% from 2081 passes that he has attempted in Ligue1 speaks volumes about his pinpoint accuracy.
When afforded the time and the chance to attack, Cyprien has displayed great abilities to break forward with the ball at his feet and is equally intelligent with his movement off the ball.
However, his defensive side of the game is something that needs great amount of work, given that he also has to perform the shielding duties for his defence.
If Tottenham manage to snap Cyprien up, he can be developed as an understudy to Mousa Dembele. And with someone of the stature and the defensive nous of Victor Wanyama by his side, he could have a great effect on the team going forward.
At Newcastle, he will have to wrestle for his position with the likes of Isaac Hayden and Jack Colback, with Jonjo Shelvey a constant figure in the middle of the park. However, more defensive solidity will be expected of him at St. James’ Park, considering how Shelvey likes to get into advanced positions.
However, all these speculations might be just speculations, because of his ACL injury, which is very likely to keep him out for a long time.