In this, the second part of the series “10 Frenchmen that Newcastle Should scout” we present some of the defenders that could make the grade at St. James’s park.
Some of you may have read the first part of this 2 part series in which we focused mainly on the attackers but this time round the focus is on defence. As iterated earlier none of these players have been linked with Newcastle previously.
Chris Mavinga – Chris Mavinga is a 21 year old left back who he currently playing for Rennes. Chris has represented France at every youth level starting from under -18s to under 21s. In fact Chris was part of the French under-19 team that won the UEFA European under-19 championship in 2010. A lot of people do not know but he spent 2010-11 season on the books of Liverpool before returning to France. One potential black mark against him is the fact that he was one of those four footballers who is currently suspended from national team because of an unauthorized night out. The potential however cannot be doubted.
Benjamin Stambouli – Benjamin Stambouli is a 22 year old Central defender who plays for Montpellier. Stambouli as a defender is comfortable with either foot and can play as a defensive midfielder too. Stambouli is a French youth international and has represented French under- 21 side 14 times. Newcastle, should they go for him, would get a defender who has Champions League experience and has also won a domestic title. All that experience will come in handy.
Lucas Digne – Lucas Digne is a 19 year left back who plays for Lille, although he is primarily a left back he can play at right back as well. Given the fact that we have Davide Santon at the club who can do the same, we know that will come really handy. Lucas is very highly rated in France and has represented the country at every youth level and is only a matter of time before he earns his first international cap for France. As with Stambouli he has played in UEFA champions league and scored for Lille in their qualifier against FC Copenhagen. For me he is one of the stars of the future.
Loris Nery – Loris Nery is a 21 year old center back and another one of those players who is a French youth International who plays his club football for Valenciennes whom he joined from Saint-Etienne in the summer of 2012. The best thing about Nery is the fact that in spite of being a central defender he can play anywhere along the back line and we all know that is one quality that every manager wants in all his players.
Nicolas Isimat-Mirin – Isimat-Mirin is a 21 year old central defender, a French youth international and plays for Valenciennes. He is a graduate of the famous Clairefontaine academy, where Hatem ben Arfa spent his earlier years. Valenciennes have made a very good start this season and in 16 matches have only conceded 17 goals, much of which is down to the contribution of Isimat-Mirin who has started 15 of those 16 games .
These are some of the finest young players currently plying their trade in France. And given our tendancy to pick up talent from across the channel, these lads could be worthy of our attention.
Have you seen any of these guys play before? Would they be good enough to start for Newcastle?