Newcastle United intend to exercise their option to extend Fabian Schar’s contract by another year.
What’s the story?
According to The Chronicle, the club do plan to invoke the clause to keep the Swiss international on Tyneside for another season despite the fact they were reportedly open to offers for him over the course of last summer.
What does this mean?
Well, Steve Bruce did try to bring Arsenal’s Rob Holding to the club in 2020 so there is clearly a desire to strengthen the central defensive ranks. Still, Schar has looked impressive at times this season and, even if his contract is extended, perhaps it’ll be to try and sell him for a fee over the course of the summer.
Previously linked with a shock move to Barcelona, making sure he stays under contract in order to bank some money is a prudent financial move.
Should he stay?
While the 29-year-old hasn’t always been a first-choice and was dropped towards the end of last season, he was looking dependable prior to the knee injury he picked up back in February. Indeed, he proved instrumental in stopping Liverpool scoring at St. James’ Park in December and is the club’s only central defender who ranks within their top three players for interceptions per game (1.6, via WhoScored).
That would at least indicate he’s more capable of winning the ball on the front foot than his colleagues at the back and, as he’s proven with his goals against the likes of Cardiff and Burnley over the years, he does have the ability to create something special.
Keeping Schar under contract, whether the plan is to sell him or not, is good business.
If he stays, Newcastle have another option in central defence and someone playing well before his injury. If he leaves, they could be in for some money and hopefully look to recoup some of the reported £3m they spent on him in 2018.