The faces of LOSC Lille’s 2019-2020 XI
After finishing second behind Paris Saint Germain in the 2018-2019 Ligue 1 season, LOSC Lille is currently focusing on the UEFA Champions League. For the first time in 5 five years, Lille is back on the top-level of European Football. Because of their great success last season, they saw goalscoring-machine Nicolas Pepe leave the club to play for Arsenal and young talent Rafael Leão to play for AC Milan. They had to search for players that should be replacing their outgoing transfers and bought ten new players during the latest transfer window. In this blog, we’re taking a look at Lille’s newly formed team. Thanks to our Insight platform, we are able to identify the playing style of each individual player with the unique Player Roles model.
Mike Maignan (GK)
This season will be the Frenchman’s fifth season as goalkeeper for LOSC Lille. He has also played for the French national under 16 team up until the under 21 team. He has not played for the first national team yet. Maignan is what we call a Ball Playing Keeper.
Player role: Ball Playing Keeper
This type of keeper has good on the ball skills and can provide his teammates with high accuracy passes, even reaching the wingers when pressure is intense. In the build-up he can be used to outnumber the opposing offensive line when his defence is put under pressure.
Zeki Celik (RB)
The Turkish right back attracted a lot of attention with his transfer to Lille last season, which is the reason he made his debut for the Turkish first national team. Meanwhile, Celik has played nine international matches with Turkey, in which he scored two goals. In the first three games of the 2019-2020 season with Lille, he also managed to give two assists. Celik is in the top 5 Turkish players based on SciSkill Potential. Next to that, he is a very versatile player who is multifunctional and can be described with three different player roles.
Gabriel Magalhães (CB)
In the other centre back position is 21-year-old Gabriel Magalhães. The Brazilian player has been undergoing a very good development over the last few months. His SciSkill and Potential are rising in a very quick rate. Magalhães was loaned to Dinamo Zagreb in the 2017-2018 season and returned to the club at the end of the season. In the 2018-2019 season, he played in 14 league-matches for Lille in which he scored 1 goal.
Player role: Ball Playing Defender
The ball playing defender is a defender with excellent passing, on the ball and dribbling skills, combined with vision in the build-up. He can provide his midfielders with shirt fast passes opening up play and has a pin-point long ball to cut through the opposing defensive line when needed.
Top level player most similar to Gabriel Magalhães’ playing style: Raphael Varane (Real Madrid).
José Fonte (CB)
It’s important to have a good balance between young and more experienced players. With 35 years old, José Fonte is the oldest and most experienced player in the Lille squad. The Portuguese defender has played for several clubs in several competitions over the years and in the 2018-2019 season, he joined Lille on a free transfer. He is an important asset for the team and he has played in all 36 games last season. José Fonte is a very versatile player who can play in all three defined centre back roles.
Domagoj Bradaric (LB)
In the left back position is 19-year-old Domagoj Bradaric. Bradaric is the left back under the age of 19 with the highest current SciSkill. The Croatian player is currently playing his first season for Lille and can be described as a typical Wing Back.
Renato Sanches (CM)
One of the newly transferred players this season is Renato Sanches. The Portuguese midfielder was bought from Bayern München at the end of the summer transfer window and has made his first minutes for Lille. Currently, Sanches is the player with the highest SciSkill and highest SciSkill Potential at Lille. It is to be expected that he is going to be of great importance for the club. Sanches is known for his versatility in the midfield, being comfortable in defensive, attacking, central and wide roles.
Player role: Advanced Playmaker
The advanced playmaker is the prime creator of the team, occupying space between the opposite midfield and defensive line. This player is technically skilled, has a good passing range, can hold up a ball and has excellent vision and timing. He relies on his technical ability and game intelligence to put other players in good scoring positions by pinpointing passes and perfectly timed through balls.
Benjamin André (CM)
Another newly transferred player is Benjamin André. After having played a really good season at Stade Rennes, the French midfielder was bought during the latest transfer window. André is known for his defensive contribution, with strong tackles and interceptions. For this reason, Benjamin André can be described as a Box-to-Box Midfielder.
Player role: Box-to-Box Midfielder
The box-to-box is a more dynamic midfielder, whose main focus is on excellent positioning, both defensively and offensively. When not in possession, he concentrates on breaking up play and guarding the defensive line. When in possession, this player dribbles forward passing the ball to players higher up the pitch and often arrives late in the opposite box to create a chance. This player heavily relies on endurance.
Yusuf Yazici (CAM)
Yusuf Yazici is a 22-year-old Turkish international, who was bought from Trabzonspor during the latest transfer window. Yacizi has played 16 games for the Turkish national first team in which he scored 1 goal and gave 5 assists. Yazici is known for his long shots and his crosses. His primary player role is Advanced Playmaker.
Top level player most similar to Yusuf Yazici’s playing style: Dele Alli (Tottenham Hotspur FC).
Jonathan Ikoné (RW)
Jonathan Ikoné is naturally an attacking midfielder but plays as a left or right winger most of the times. Ikoné made his debut in the French national team early September and directly scored a goal. He is the player with the second highest SciSkill Potential at Lille. The Frenchman was bought from Paris Saint Germain last season and he has become of great importance for the team. He played in all 38 matches of the 2018-2019 Ligue 1 season, in which he scored 3 goals and gave 10 assists. Ikoné is known for his dribbles and agility, which makes him multi-functional for positions such as attacking midfielder and winger.
Player role: Wide Playmaker
A wide playmaker utilizes the space on the flanks and in the half spaces. He has excellent vision and passing skills and Is able to cut inside and dribble with the ball, opening up space for other players. A wide playmaker often is the creative outlet of a team and is very able to create chances for other players.
Jonathan Bamba (LW)
The French left winger, who came to Lille on a free transfer last season, has been a very important asset for the team. In the 2018-2019 Ligue 1 season, Bamba played in all 38 matches in which he scored 13 goals and gave 3 assists. He is characterized by his agility and his finishing and long shots. Bamba can be described with 3 different player roles.
Victor Osimhen (CF)
Victor Osimhen is another newly transferred player that was bought from RSC Charleroi during the latest transfer window. In his first five League-games for Lille, the only 20-year-old Nigerian international managed to score 5 goals. He is the player with the second best SciSkill Potential from the Nigerian players aged 21 and under (right behind Samuel Chukwueze from Villareal CF). Osimhen is known for his strong aerial duels and his finishing skills, which makes him an interesting striker for the playing style of a lot of clubs out there.
Player role: Target Man
The target man is a physically strong player, capable of holding on to the ball when under pressure and able to lay off passes to teammates in better positions. The target man is excellent at offensive headers. A good player to use in combination with classic wingers or when playing long balls to play out of pressure or when applying a direct or even one-route passing style.
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