In my fourth edition of Newcastle targets scout report, I will be looking at Sporting Lisbon defender Ruben Semedo.

Background information:

The Portuguese defender stands at 6 foot 2 tall and has spent his whole career at Sporting. He’s only 23-years-old which means he has a lot of time to grow and develop as a player. Semedo started his career at Sporting B (the reserve side of Sporting Lisbon) making one appearance but was then sent out on loan to Spanish team Reus. The next season, he was promoted to Sporting Lisbon but was loaned out to Vitória FC. However, this season he has broken into the first team and has made 24 league appearances.

Style of play:

Semedo is a centre back with explosive pace. This is the strongest attribute of his game as it makes up for any positional mistakes. He can also tackle with ease, without having to go to ground. Another strong point of his game is his ball playing ability. He can restart attacks from the back and carry the ball through the pitch.

Pros:

His biggest pro is undoubtedly his pace. Having this utility cancels out any quick attackers that a player like Clark or Lascelles might find tricky. Another pro is his ball playing ability. With a lot of Premier League teams utilising high pressing tactics, having a defender who can play out from the back is absolutely key. Becuase getting your goalkeeper to hoof it long against a high pressing team will not work (unless you have a team of Peter Crouch’s).

Cons:

Of course, there are going to be a few cons. The first is that he can often be caught out of position, although his pace makes up for that. The second is his discipline, he’s picked up two red cards this season. But I do think that could be ironed out with training from Benitez. Finally, there is some speculation on whether this deal will go through. With reports that Southampton are very interested in the player. All of this is coming from talk from his agent, but we all know how much of a fuss agents like to cause.

Feature image credit: Sir-Nobby

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