Why Brighton should not hesitate to sign Denys Bain in January
According to the Sun, Le Havre centre-back Denys Bain finds himself in the middle of a transfer tug of war between Newcastle United and Brighton and Hove Albion as both the Premier League teams are looking to strengthen their squads in January.
Reports claim that the 25-year-old centre-back was on Arsene Wenger’s target list in his final season at Arsenal and the Gunners had sent scouts to watch the Frenchman in Ligue 2. However, a move to the Emirates did not materialise after Wenger stepped down as the manager.
Bain has less than a year remaining on his current contract which is set to expire next summer and the Frenchman’s consistently impressive performances in Ligue 2 have attracted interest from French top-flight clubs Amiens and Nice (h/t Sun).
Newcastle and Brighton can be hopeful of securing the services of the Frenchman for a cut-price deal as Le Havre haven’t been able to tie him down to a new contract so far and they face the risk of losing him for free next summer.
Standing at just a shade over 6ft, Bain is not particularly tall for a centre-back but he makes up for it with his superior positional sense and physicality. A good reader of the game in the air, he gets off the ground quickly to beat his offensive counterparts while defending corners and set-pieces.
A fast and agile centre-back, the Frenchman always has a slight edge over the attackers during counter-attacking situations. The 25-year-old uses his anticipation to win the 50-50 balls to cut out the attacks by pressing higher up the pitch and excels with his solid tackling.
He is also adept at making crucial interceptions and does not hesitate to throw his body on the line to make goal-saving blocks.
To be honest, Denys Bain is too good a player to play for too long in the French second division and has all the attributes necessary to take the next big step in his career.
And he perfectly fits the bill for Brighton and Hove Albion, who need a backup centre-back to provide cover and competition for the likes of Shane Duffy and Lewis Dunk. Shane Duffy, in particular, has been one of the standout performers for the Seagulls this season in the Premier League, while English international Lewis Dunk has complemented him well in the heart of the defence.
It is largely due to the exploits of Dunk and Duffy at the back that Brighton have a decent defensive record this season. However, they certainly need more depth in their squad to push for a top-ten finish.
Brighton might face a potential burnout of options at the back if either Duffy or Dunk gets sidelined with an injury. Leon Balogun is probably the only potential replacement for the regular centre-backs but Chris Hughton should be wary of the Nigerian’s lack of composure and awareness at the back.
Hence, the Seagulls should not hesitate to go ahead with the move in January as they have a good chance of landing Bain for a measly amount.