Currently we are smack dab in the middle of the transfer window, the Euro 2021 *oops* 2020 being played out and the never ending Sancho Saga is finally over. Sancho is a United player. Seems weird to say that out loud.
With a reported budget of 150 mn this summer it remains to be seen how exactly the amount will be utilised this summer. The flavour of the month is Sancho, a Centre-half and a Defensive Midfielder/Backup Right back. Now how much of this can be attained is up in the air.
Now with the limited funds we have it would be ill-advised to spend it on another winger, especially another left-winger. But getting a young promising player with bags of potential and the right mentality is always appreciated. After all our greatest Portuguese player was found another similar circumstances.
The newest player we have been linked to is 19-year-old Ghanaian international, Kamaldeen Sulemana.
The youngster is currently plying his trade in Denmark with Nordsjaelland, having joined them from Ghanaian football academy Right to Dream in 2020.
The programme helps puts Ghana’s top young players in the shop window for European clubs. They share owners with Danish club Nordsjaelland, with many graduates eventually ending up at the Danish side. From there most end up moving to a bigger team in Europe or going to MLS. Mohammed Kudus, who signed for Ajax last summer and is a close friend of Sulemana, is the most recent and their biggest export yet.
The Ghanaian international is predominantly right-footed, thus he’ll regularly play on the left wing, as this naturally opens up more opportunities for him to cut inside onto his favoured foot in order to get shots off on goal, similar to how Marcus Rashford plays when he’s on the left.
However this doesn’t mean he is single footed. It’s pretty clear when you watch the player that he exhibits comfort in using his weaker left foot when required to do so, taking on shots and threading passes into the feet of teammates, proving that he can play as a centre forward when needed to.
It’s not just his goal threat that causes headaches for opposition defences though. Sulemana’s main asset is his incredible dribbling. This, combined with a wicked turn of pace, means he is capable of terrorising even the compact of defenses. Low block ? No problem.
He stands at 5ft9in which isn’t the tallest, but having a relatively low centre of gravity helps him in attacking duels, as does his electrifying pace. This season, he’s averaged a high 11.71 dribbles per 90 with a success rate of just under 50 per cent.
Across the 2020/21 Danish Superliga campaign, he averaged 4.4 completed dribbles per game which is by far the most of any player in the competition. The second highest player on the list has an average of 3.3 per game. To put that into context, there are only two players in the Premier League with a better average – Allan Saint-Maximin and Adama Traore, while Neymar himself only completes slightly more at 4.7 per game, albeit all these figures being in superior leagues.
His 5.02 progressive runs per 90 is almost 1.5 more than his closest competitor in the Danish League. His 8.07 successful attacking actions per 90 is the best in the league with the second best coming in at much lower 6.11.
Stats last season
The tricky winger scored 10 goals and laid on 4 assists across the duration of the season. The boy is not goal – averse at all, attempting 87 Shots at goal, the second highest in the league. Even while attempting a higher volume of shots, he has relatively modest SoT(Shot on Target conversion rate) of 43 percent. He also clocked in an impressive 119 minutes per goal involvement.
His goal tally breaks down to an impressive 0.38 goals per 90, a number almost identical to his xG average of 0.39. This highlights a player who will provide goals if he is given chances.
The radar chart clearly indicated what sort of a forward he is, a modern day inside forward. Excellent when receiving the ball at his feet which he uses to drive at the opposition and try to cut inside every chance he gets. In terms of playing style he resembles Neymar with his dribbling ability and explosiveness.
Kamaldeen is in no way a finished product, he needs to do much more to be a rounded footballer. His passing game needs to be worked if he is to be more than a one trick pony. All the dribbling ability without the eye to pick out a pass at the right moment severely hinders you as potent attacking unit in a team. His end product in the final third leaves much to be desired. However the player has the talent, hunger and luckily, age on his side to improve on it.
His pace and one-vs-one ability makes him a perfect addition to Solskjaer’s counter-attacking system. For a reported fee of around 15 mil, he represents good values over a long period. Its usually these kind of relatively unknown diamond in the rough player deals that get me the most excited.
Even if he doesn’t turn into the Ghanian Neymar, most of his transfer fee can be recouped. Irrespective of where he turns out, his career is one that must be watched closely.