Newcastle United Opinion: Why the Magpies should sign Soualiho Meite?
Torino midfield ace Soualiho Meite has enjoyed a fine season in Serie A since signing from AS Monaco last summer, scoring twice in 21 league games while impressing with his energy, dynamism and skill-set.
The 24-year-old’s performances haven’t gone under the radar, with Tottenham having tried signing him in the January transfer window. Now impressing with his all-action performances in midfield, Newcastle United should make an attempt to sign Soualiho Meite in the summer.
Newcastle United have endured a torrid campaign in the Premier League as they lie 16th on the table, just a point above the relegation zone. The Magpies did what was needed to bolster their hopes of avoiding the drop by signing the likes of Miguel Almiron and Antonio Barreca in January.
But in reality, Rafael Benitez needs even more investment in the summer to build a strong squad. Solving the midfield conundrum has to be Benitez’s priority ahead of the 2019/20 campaign and he must persuade the Newcastle hierarchy to splash the cash on Soualiho Meite.
Standing at 6ft 2in, Meite is a very strong, physically imposing combative midfielder who excels in protecting the backline with his positional sense and tackling traits.
Despite possessing a towering frame, he can run with the ball at his feet and boasts of an admirable range of passing and immaculate ball distribution skills with which he dictates the tempo of the game.
The former France U-20 international is a hardworking and tenacious who is not only adept at breaking up opposition’s play but also capable of creating chances for his teammates and coming up with the odd goal or two. Meite is quite strong in the air and he never hesitates to put his foot out when needed, often ending up getting booked.
Benitez has Mohamed Diame as the only defensive midfielder in his ranks but the Senegalese will turn 32 in June and has shown signs of slowing down. Diame isn’t the midfield powerhouse he once was, while Jonjoe Shelvey has endured an injury-hit campaign.
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On the other hand, even though Isaac Hayden and Sean Longstaff have performed well in midfield, they aren’t world-class players that would take the Magpies to a different level altogether.
Suffice to say, Benitez needs more depth in their midfield options to provide cover and competition for the likes of Diame, Hayden, Shelvey and the young Longstaff.
And Meite, with his technical as well as physical attributes, can add that steel to the Newcastle midfield. That said, the Magpies should go all out to sign the Torino midfielder in summer.