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Discussion in 'The January 2016 Transfer Rumours Archive' started by Dharmabum, Feb 24, 2016.
Great tackler & interceptor.
I laughed when I saw the Modric comparison. But looking at a view videos, he does seem to be that kind of player. Hard to get the ball off, good control and has an eye for a pass. He seems to play deep like Modric used to and brings the ball out from the back. Looks a tidy player and £5-6m looks a steal.
Always liked this player from his Hamburg days, but we have no need now IMO.
We could have done with this player a few years ago, but not now with the likes of Carroll, Mason and a few others coming through the youth system - Badelj is not better as his £5m price tag indicates.
I love Badelj's style. He has his weaknesses, his moments of nonchalance, but he's got such an elegant way of playing that it is a joy to watch. I've written about him on here many times (since his Dinamo Zagreb days, I believe).
I follow many/most Croatian players from most leagues, but Badelj is up there with the players I enjoy watching/following the most. Subtle touches and movements that may go unnoticed when watching the game as a whole, but very clear when paying particular attention to the player himself.
He could actually be an upgrade on one of Mason/Carroll/Bentaleb.
I don't know about the quality of the players coming through the youth system, or when they would actually be ready to contribute at that level, but using the "fee believed to be around" isn't a strong (enough) argument against Badelj. For one, it may not be the actual cost. Further, the fee doesn't always indicate a player's true value. There are bunch of overpriced players around, when dealing with England-to-England transfers especially. Their price tags don't always give you a proper indication of how good they are.
Again, I'm not going to argue against who Spurs may already have from within, but I'm ready to offer why Badelj may (or may not) be good value.
Don't need him, We have numerous players in the same position who are better.
I like him, he has a good eye, a quick brain and an accurate foot. He is quick to set up an attack with accurate passing, which looking at that video, is better than Mason. My opinion.
Its weird, but I had been thinking past couple of days that we could maybe do with a player exactly like this, and if we qualified for CL, could try sort something out in summer. Someone a little more experienced, that moves the ball on quickly and can do so more vertically both long range and short. With a bit of nous, calmness and vision. Someone that may be a little bit of a reclamation project and not cost the earth. My reasoning was as potential partner to Dier in the CM2, against weaker teams at home where someone with a quick brain could try and unlock gaps quicker and also link up with our AM's a bit better. At least until Alli maybe continued to develop and ended up there.
I had been looking at Gago's return to fitness and form in Argentina for Boca, and that in the past 2-3 years he had been playing well for Argentina as well but he went down with an Achilles injury end of last year. Shame. I think in the right set up he could perform very well back in Europe.
Maybe Badelj can fit this similar mould.
There is Harry Winks, I suppose. But nobody is suggesting that Badelj isn't better than Harry Winks, I hope.
Word of caution, though, we know for a fact that it's fashionable for agents to link players to Spurs when they want to move said players on ...
Speaking of agents, it could be interesting to get to know Badelj's agent more. They represent a few players, mostly youngsters from Bosnia, Serbia & Croatia, inc. Srdan Babic, the CB who was part of Serbia's team that won the last WC for U-20s.
Badelj is a very good link-up midfielder. He's not Modric, as NO ONE is. But he is the player who can/should have the most touches during a match and link the defense to the attack while always making himself available. He has that ability to dictate play. He's not fast, he's a not a pitbull, but he reads the game very well (both offensively and defensively). He deceptively closes space down to either intercept passes or get in a foot for a tackle. Hard to explain, but he doesn't run around with his head cut off, but somehow manages to consistently get interceptions, blocks, tackles. All while being "slow" (at least according to some). You don't necessarily want him sprinting after players in open space, but again, his ability to read the game helps him to compensate.
He's had a very good season so far with Fiorentina. Playing primarily as a double-pivot next to Vecino, with Borja Valero playing off of them. Last season he spent a lot of time as a the defensive midfielder in their 4-3-3 (while at times playing as one of the central midfielders). He's not a defensive midfielder in the strictest of definitions, but in today's game that's where he may get classified. But central midfielder or deep-lying playmaker would probably be more accurate.
Stats don't tell you everything, but could at least give you a decent indication of a player's strength's/weaknesses and/or style of play:
Fiorentina player ratings this 2015/16 season (via whoscored):
CroSports @CroSports_ 23 Dec 2015
According to 'cies football observatory' Milan Badelj was the 2nd best (defensive) Central Midfielder of 2015:
But for me, from a perspective of a football fan, it's not just what the players do, but how they do it that determines how enjoyable it is to follow. Badelj plays with a style that is easy on the eye. He does things of substance, but he likes to do them with flair. Sometimes that's his downfall, but it's also one of his endearing qualities.
Of course the attention in the above gif goes to the nutmeg on Messi (which was nice, granted), but you also should pay attention to how he gets into place to intercept the pass. It's as if the Argentina defender meant to pass it to him. He does that a lot in games. Reads where the ball might go and picks the exact time to attack.
He's not perfect, but he's got a lot of quality and can be a pleasure to watch.
Thanks for the video!!! I think he and Bentaleb are 2 very similar players (judging from this video). To me their play are uncannily similar. Have not seen much of Badelj to be honest, but if he has high concentration throughout a game, he might be an upgrade over Bentaleb now (better concentration and defensive positional play?), but Bentaleb being about 5 years younger of coz have a higher ceiling.
its easy to be seduced by that video. we dont have anybody that can hold on to the ball quite like that video shows.
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