Newcastle United want Diego Carlos. They’ve already had two bids for the Brazilian centre-back knocked back by Sevilla and the Andalusian club are bracing themselves for a final offensive as we enter the final week of the January transfer window.
Newcastle were taken over by an investment fund linked to the Saudi Arabian government earlier in the season and are desperate to avoid relegation. They currently sit 18th in the Premier League table with 15 points from 21 games, a point from safety. If you back them to avoid the drop, see here for some of the most trusted online sportsbooks.
Newcastle have already manage to convince Kieran Trippier to leave Atletico Madrid to bolster their defence and now their sights have been firmly trained on Diego Carlos. But Sevilla aren’t keen to lose a pillar of their first team during the January transfer window. They’re in the midst of a very tough title race with Real Madrid and if Diego Carlos leaves their defence is compromised.
Because Diego Carlos is a very good defender, although admittedly not a great one. He thrives at Sevilla because of the defensive structure of the team. To his right is usually Jules Kounde, a Frenchman five years younger than him but tipped to become one of the very best centre-backs in the European game.
And then just in front of Diego Carlos and Kounde is Fernando, the veteran pivot who’s probably the best in his position in La Liga aside from Madrid midfielder Casemiro. Kounde is a fan of venturing up field and Diego Carlos does have a mistake in him, so the 35-year-old’s defensive nous and ability to cover is huge.
But were Diego Carlos to leave Sevilla it would expose just how shallow the talent pool is at the club when it comes to central defenders. Karim Rekik is capable but not title-worthy, while there’s no other natural centre-back in the squad. The closest thing is probably holding midfielder Nemanja Gudelj, who’s been known to drop in at centre-back when injuries require it.
So Sevilla would need to go to the market to bring in a replacement should they lose Diego Carlos and it’s not easy to find a centre-back of his quality in the January transfer window when you’re working with a budget like Sevilla’s, even less so one who’s guaranteed to hit the ground running. And for as talented as Monchi is, he does have some misses to go along with his hits.
The only proviso, however, would be if Monchi was confident that the lined up replacement – and there is a lined up replacement – could come in and perform from the jump. Feyenoord’s left-sided centre-back Marco Sensei has been mentioned. Because that would enable Sevilla to go out and sign Anthony Martial from Manchester United as they could certainly use a centre-forward. Time will tell how this one plays out.