Wolves are reportedly set to open talks with Lille for defensive stalwart Sven Botman as an alternative for Duje Caleta-Car but face competition from Sevilla.
According to transfer expert Fabrizio Romano, Wolverhampton Wanderers are closely monitoring LOSC Lille defender Sven Botman and can make a late move for the Netherlands Under-21 International before the summer window slams shut.
The Midlands outfit have been in contact with Duje Caleta-Car; however, the player prefers a club playing European football should he exit Marseille. Romano claims that the negotiations for Caleta-Car have not reached advanced stages yet. It will be difficult to persuade the Croatian to switch to Molineux; therefore, Botman is now an alternate possibility that Wolves are exploring.
Lille would like to keep hold of Botman, and he still has four years remaining on the five-year contract he was handed at Les Dogues after signing from Ajax last summer, so he won’t come cheap.
However, they are a financially stricken club and were forced to sell their key stars such as Boubakary Soumare and Mike Maignan. It’s understood that any offers near the £27 million mark – which they received for Gabriel – Lille would likely give it serious consideration.
Botman is a product of Ajax’s reputed academy; he moved out to Lille last year after failing to make a mark with the Dutch giants. However, since his arrival, the 21-year-old has integrated effortlessly into the Les Dogues setup, playing a crucial role in their surprise Ligue 1 triumph last season.
Botman’s athleticism, strength and ball-playing talents have put him on the radars of multiple top clubs across the continent, with Liverpool, Real Madrid and Manchester United all being linked with him at some point in the summer. Sevilla, too, are interested in the Dutchman as a replacement for Jules Kounde, who looks set to join Chelsea.
Botman is a left-footed centre-half who possesses everything a modern-day defender should have. He makes the most of his 6ft 4 size in the air, winning a majority of the headed duels he contests. Reading out some of the metrics from the last campaign reflect his quality, as he averaged 0.8 tackles, 1.5 interceptions, made 0.6 blocks and 3.2 clearances per 90.
The Dutchman is a very technical and confident passer of the ball; he averaged 70 passes per game at an 86.5% accuracy, of which 3.8 were successful long balls.
Botman would be a fantastic addition to the Wolves backline, which currently appears to be lacking in pace and mobility at times. He can slot very well in the back-three system alongside Conor Coady and Romain Saiss, and he may also get the extra freedom to express himself by picking out progressive passes. He would certainly be an exciting signing for the club and a statement of intent from Wolves’ hierarchy.