Reported Aston Villa and Newcastle target Marvelous Nakamba puts Kante to shame

N'Golo Kanté of Chelsea and Florian Lejeune of Newcastle United FC during the Premier League match between Chelsea FC and Newcastle United FC at Stamford Bridge on January 12, 2019 in...

Club Brugge star Marvelous Nakamba has been linked with a move to the Premier League via Aston Villa and Newcastle United.

Marvelous Nakamba of Club Brugge and Axel Witsel of Borussia Dortmund battle for the ball during the Group A match of the UEFA Champions League between Borussia Dortmund and Club Brugge at...

For any Aston Villa or Newcastle United fans wondering what £20 million gets you these days, the answer is a tough-tackling defensive midfielder whose stats put N’Golo Kante to shame.

With a name like Marvelous Nakamba, you better be good. And, fortunately, the Club Brugge midfielder is.

So much so that, according to Zimbabwean news outlet Chronicle, Aston Villa and Newcastle are interested in a player who is expected to cost a hefty £20 million. Watford have apparently identified Nakamba as a potential replacement for Abdoulaye Doucoure too.

 

A 25-year-old who made his name at Vitesse Arnhem before moving to Belgium in 2017, Nakamba might not be a household name but, crucially, nor was Kante when he joined Leicester City four years ago.

Now viewed by many as the world’s premiere ball-winning midfielder, Kante averaged just 1.75 tackles and one interception per game in the Premier League and Europa League last season, even if he had been used in a more advanced role by Maurizio Sarri.

NGolo Kante of Chelsea, Declan Rice and Mark Noble of West Ham during the Premier League match between Chelsea FC and West Ham United at Stamford Bridge on April 8, 2019 in London, United...

Despite this, even in the 2016/17 and 2017/18 campaigns, when Kante was patrolling the lines just in front of Chelsea’s defence, his stats still cannot match up with Nakamba’s.

During Brugge’s 2018/19 Champions League journey, when they held their own against Monaco, Atletico Madrid and Dortmund, Nakamba stepped up to the plate in style with a remarkable 4.4 interceptions and three tackles per game.

These statistics alone appear to justify a £20 million price-tag.

Angel Correa of Atletico and Marvelous Nakamba of Club Brugge fight for the ball during the UEFA Champions League Group A match between Club Brugge and Club Atletico de Madrid at Jan...

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