Premier League leaders Leicester City along with other clubs like Manchester United, Chelsea, Arsenal, Borussia Dortmund and Atletico Madrid are said to be watching French winger Ousmane Dembele. The player has been tipped to be the next big talent to emerge from France.
The 18-year old joined Rennes back in 2010, but only signed his professional contract recently, back in October 2015.
Just a month later, he made his debut for Rennes, coming on from the bench. However, it was when he was put in the starting line-up, that he showed the kind of menacing impact he can make. The player oozed confidence throughout and tapped home a cross to score Rennes’ opener in the 2-2 draw against Bordeaux.
Since then, he has featured in 14 games in the league, with four of those appearances coming from the bench. He has scored 5 goals and assisted another 2, an impressive return. He averages 2 key passes every 90 minutes, but the stat that really stands out is that of successful dribbles – 4.8. They truly illustrate his skills as a winger.
He wants to run at defenders and get in behind and he can do it both through his acceleration, as well as through the finesse with the ball.
Another great strength of the player is that he doesn’t feel intimidated to strike the ball, averaging 2.6 shots every 90 minutes. He loves to cut inside and drive in the box, ensuring not only is he supplying passes to his fellow attackers but also helping in the goalscoring bit himself.
There are certain weaknesses in his game like the fact that he sometimes doesn’t pass when he should, and tries to excessively dribble his way out of a tough situation. That can sometimes come off as a little bit selfish and make it seem that his decision making is not too great. However, the encouraging part is that he recognizes it and has acknowledged it.
In an interview, he said, “I need to be more efficient because sometimes in situations I try to dribble when I should be passing. I lose the ball and get an earful from the others! But I’m working on that; my team play needs improving.”
That is a refreshing thing to hear from a youngster as problem acknowledged is many times, problem solved. His passing generally could do with some improving. He is only 18 years, so these weakness shouldn’t deter one from viewing him as one of the brightest prospects in France.
There is obviously a long way to go for him to realise his potential and with the right kind of guidance, he will definitely go really far.
All in all, his game is extremely promising and it is not surprising that he has been scouted by top clubs. He has a very bright future ahead and whether immediately, it lies in France is difficult to guess as a top team can buy him as a signing for the future.
The aforementioned Premier League clubs have been said to be interested and Dembele could certainly prove to be a great investment for any of the sides.
Written by Aakriti Mehrotra
Follow Aakriti on Twitter @Aakriti1
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