So it now appears that centre back is a position we are serious about improving in preparation for the start of the next season. It’s not just improvement of the position we seem to be looking for its practically on overhaul with Mawson, Diop and Santos all looking as though we have a serious chance of signing. Fees are reportedly being close with the employers of both Mawson and Santos. Now I can’t claim to know anything about what any of them will bring to us and there is no point me rambling on about how good we will be if/when we sign any of them. Im not going to claim to be ITK either so I don’t know if we want to sign 1 or 3 of the players above if the price is right.
But to me it certainly seems as though there is the intention of recruiting more than one of them. Looking at the profile of the players I am impressed, all young imposing centre back playing first team football so I am working on the assumption they will be a signing for now and expected to be playing at a level that improves us. Maybe the decision on how many we sign will be dependent on who we let leave and in my opinion we let one of the best 2 centre back in the club leave this summer, which bring me swiftly round the young man I believe is the other one of these 2.
Declan Rice, he is the real deal isn’t he? How many times have we seen a youngster come in for a short spell of 5 games or so and look ok, then disappear off 2 leagues below and stay there. But Rice has done the business all season, he had his little taste the season before and unlike the rest he picked up and became a crucial part of our team. He is one of those we must build a team around if we ever have any intention of showing we want to grow as a team/club. I hope we start the season with the strength in depth at centre back to allow Declan to be considered to be a midfielder.
Don’t get me wrong it’s not because I think the others are better than him, it’s because I look at our midfield last year, and he has every quality in his game that they only have between them. Noble is just not that agile or as athletic as he used to be, but he is still an important part of the team. Obiang has a good range of passing and defensively isn’t too bad but he can get caught out and when times were hard he didn’t seem prepared to do the dirty work. Kouyate just looks as though he doesn’t have a brain. Anything any of them can do on the pitch I would argue Rice can do better (Apart from pens, Noble is not getting surpassed as our penalty taker any time soon!!) and I would love to see him paired with a real quality central midfielder in the mould of a Wilshire for him to learn from.
Do you worry how new signing could impact on Rice’s future? Where would you like to see him fit in to the team next year?
Let me know what you think!
Written By Jack | @myWHUopinion