Newcastle United head of recruitment Steve Nickson admires Sassuolo’s Gianluca Scamacca, according to The Chronicle‘s Lee Ryder.
The 23-year-old Italian striker has finally established himself in the Sassuolo first-team after loan stints at Cremonese, PEC Zwolle, Ascoli and Genoa. He has scored 13 goals in 28 Serie A appearances this season, averaging one every 117 minutes.
Newcastle have also been strongly linked with another Serie A striker in the form of Atalanta’s Duvan Zapata. The Daily Record even claimed that the Magpies made a £25m bid for the Colombian in January.
Ryder reported for The Chronicle that Zapata remains on Newcastle’s ‘wish list’, but they may only make a move for the 30-year-old if they are unable to snap up Scamacca.
Nickson is said to be ‘well aware’ of the Sassuolo hitman ahead of the summer transfer window.
Should Newcastle prioritise Zapata or Scamacca?
First and foremost, the former scores more non-penalty goals per 90 minutes (0.65 against 0.52). In terms of their all-round game, though, Zapata boasts double the expected assists p90 (0.2 against 0.1) and has also completed more than twice as many dribbles (1.68 against 0.79) a the Sassuolo marksman.
However, Scamacca’s defensive contribution is far stronger – he ranks in the 62nd percentile (among positional peers) for pressures and the 73rd for tackles, compared to just the sixth and the 19th for Zapata.
Also, whereas the Colombian may be more or less the finished article at the age of 30, Scamacca’s game can be expected to develop even further over the coming years. Valued at £27m by Transfermarkt, the 23-year-old could be a smart long-term addition for Newcastle.
In other news, Luke Edwards has revealed Newcastle’s summer budget
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