Newcastle join Benfica in race for versatile German international

Robin Koch of Sport-Club Freiburg (Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images)
Robin Koch of Sport-Club Freiburg (Photo by TF-Images/Getty Images) /

Newcastle United are set to battle for the signature of Germany’s rising star who currently plays for SC Freiburg.

Despite the takeover of Newcastle United falling through, at least for now, the front office is continuing to move forward with transfer planning in preparation for next season.

That being said, the type of business that is conducted might not excite fans, but a few signings should be expected.

The Magpies have been linked with a wide range of players, primarily from England, but the scouting department has expanded their list to other top leagues in Europe.

A few days ago we reacted to rumors that Lyon winger Bertrand Traore is on the club’s radar, and now a German international can be added to that list.

According to a new report from Record, Newcastle United will roll up their sleeves to battle Portuguese giants Benfica for the services of Robin Koch.

The 24-year-old currently plays his football for SC Freiburg in the Bundesliga, and he earned his first call-ups to the German national team last year.

Koch has spent the majority of his professional career playing as a central defender, but he is one of those rare talents who has shown he is capable of having a positive impact in the middle of the park as well.

This is reflective in the fact that Koch enjoyed a passing accuracy rating of 85% last season, in which he completed 1,253 passes.

What’s more impressive is the fact that Koch’s field vision and sharp passing led to 31 shot attempts for his teammates in the final third.

Of the central midfielders currently in the squad, Jonjo Shelvey is the only creative mind in the bunch as he orchestrates multiple attacks per game.

Isaac Hayden is a stellar defensive-minded midfielder who disrupts counter-attacks and recovers the ball well, but his offensive involvement is minimal. Sean Longstaff is good for a goal or two each season, but he is far from being a playmaker.

It will be interesting to see how things play out regarding Newcastle United and Koch, but he would certainly be an interesting and exciting signing for the club.

The key question is whether or not Newcastle United will invest £22m for his services, especially when some players in England are available for free, such as Jeff Hendrick.

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With Koch now entering his prime as a player, and enjoying recognition at the international level, this is the perfect time for the Toon to bring in a player of his caliber with great potential to St. James’ Park.