Newcastle United and Chelsea are interested in signing Brahim Diaz this summer as uncertainty persists over his future, a report claims.
According to a report from The Sun on Sunday (via TheBootRoom), Newcastle and Chelsea are keen on signing Brahim and he could well be available in the summer given that his two-year loan deal at Milan from Real Madrid will end.
The 23-year-old could join Milan on a permanent deal for €22m but Real Madrid have a €27m buy-back clause which means they could keep control of his future and potentially sell him on for a higher price.
The Premier League duo ‘have been made aware that the Spaniard could become available’ as per the newspaper with both the Magpies and the Blues interested in adding to their attacking options ahead of the 2023-24 campaign.
Brahim Diaz has made over 100 appearances in all competitions for the Rossoneri and this season he has five goals across the league and Champions League.
Take him and CDK too!
In very short summary STOP THE PRESS. Management and Pioli need to watch (or rewatch) Daniel Maldini’s half against Inter and then his 65 minutes against Sassuolo and pause all decision making until he has played out the year. I am sure Paolo will have a hard time with this because he should believe his boy has a real role to play next year. It will be a very difficult thing for him to justify given his obvious conflict, but that is not to say the decision cannot be justified.
If you want to read on…
There is a lot of money to be saved, which can be used to pursue someone of genuine quality to lead the attacking midfield, to my mind that should be Zaniolo, instead of continuing with this patchwork of average players (which is our current squad) and then signing more. I’d let Diaz go and sell anyone Pioli doesn’t have faith in. Maldini can play attacking roles off the bench and starting against weaker Serie A side next season. In doing so, he would give us more than any attacking player we currently have (other than Leao and the 3 weeks of good Brahim a season though this latter point in questionable).
I’ll put the detail here because there isn’t really anywhere else to put it.
Spezia’s change in coach appears to have resulted in changed fortunes for Maldini who is growing by the week. Semplici appears to have a lot of faith in the boy, who took free kicks and corners playing as the left winger in a 4-3-3. Maldini played a central/roaming role as a # 10 / second striker / AM (depending on exactly what the coach asked him to do) against Inter. To my eye he played both roles well and with tactical intelligence (which is NOT to say it was perfect).
My starting point for watching Maldini is trying to be as harsh as possible. I want him to succeed, for all of the obvious reasons, but I don’t want emotion to cloud my judgment.
In this sort of scenario, the inability to wipe the smile off my face is usually a pretty good indicator that what I am seeing is real. It’s the purest expression of emotion telling reason ‘I told you so…even though my reasoning sucked’.
To put it into context, it was great (for Daniel) that he scored against Milan. He did a few things in that game but he still looked a boy, not like the sort of player that could consistently impact a game. Even the goal itself slowly looped in without any real whip, it almost seemed like a miskick (I know it wasn’t), or like something you’d see on the Primavera pitch.
His second half against Inter was much more substantial, even more substantial than a well taken goal. He looked dynamic and powerful, playing a central, roaming role as described above. He was instrumental in creating the second Spezia goal, with 3 or 4 efforts in a phase of play that ended up creating the space to get the ball to N’Zola who was fouled in the box.
I’m going to say that the 65 minutes he played against Sassuolo is the first game of the rest of his career. It will be looked back on as the evidence of his progression from a talented boy to professional who belongs on a Serie A pitch, and not at Spezia (with all due respect).
His dribbling and ball control had the languid grace I’d associate with CDK. Unlike CDK, though, Maldini beat his opponents with a 360 degree range of motion. When he couldn’t do it with his own feet, he would chip a little pass to a team mate which provided him with the time and space to move the game forward (like something Thomas Mueller would do).
He looked quick and powerful. I was surprised by this change in him. He’s also grown since his Primavera days and looks almost 6’3. He was not bullied off the ball by more mature opponents and gave his own back. But ultimately, and most pleasingly, he was clearly a class above the rest of the players out there (or perhaps clearly on part with Berardi and Lauriente).
He tracked back a long way, too, showing a defensive substance that I had been warned not to expect. It wasn’t perfect but he worked hard. It has to be said that there was a few occasions where he took more central defensive positions on the edge of and inside Sassuolo’s penalty box, which I thought should have been covering the right back/winger for Sassuolo. But seemed to be telling Nikolaou (listed as the Spezia left centre back) as play unfolded that it was his job. Spezia was doing something weird with Amlan (the starting left back) and Nikolaou who seemed to swap positions during the game. It was Nikolaou who seemed to be doing all of the attacking up the left wing (behind Maldini). It could be that marking got caught up in the confusion.
The negatives were that Daniel ran out gas and was a bit too right-footed, for my liking, but that didn’t get him into trouble or closed down the way CDK being too left-footed does. Assuming Daniel continues to start, it will probably take another 2 or 3 weeks to gain the conditioning to run out a match. I don’t see an issue there (especially since neither Diaz nor CDK play full matches).
I think this is very real.