Milan close to signing Mohamed Simakan from Strasbourg

Martin Macdonald
Martin Macdonald Updated: 19 May 2021 16:43 CEST 3 min read
Milan close to signing Mohamed Simakan from Strasbourg

Milan have prioritised the signing of a new central defender in January, with Stefano Pioli keen to bolster his backline for the second half of the season with the acquisition of Strasbourg’s Mohamed Simakan.

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  • With Juventus and Inter not running away with things like this time last year in Serie A, Milan have emerged as title contenders for the first time in years, with veteran striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic leading a young squad to the top of the table after the opening 17 matches.

    Statistic2019/202020/21
    Tackles P901.91.6
    Aerials Won P902.51.5
    Duels Won P909.15.2
    Ball Recoveries P905.37.1
    Interceptions P901.91.8
    Pass Completion76%82%
    Ligue 1 only, via FootballCritic

    They have one of the best defensive records in the league, with 19 goals conceded in 17, but Pioli wants competition for places at the back alongside Alessio Romagnoli, Simon Kjaer, Mateo Musacchio, and youngster Matteo Gabbia.

    Calcio Mercato previously reported that Milan’s number one transfer target this January would be Simakan, and now Sky Sports are indicating that the deal is close.

    The 20-year-old, who can play either at right-back or centre-back, made his debut for Strasbourg in 2019/20 and went on to make 19 appearances in Ligue 1 that campaign.

    Though Strasbourg have been struggling in the 2020/21 campaign, winning just six games out of their opening 19, Simakan has been one of their standout performers and has played every single minute of the season so far in the French top flight.

    The player’s agent, Francesco di Frisco, previously stated his belief that Milan would come in for Simakan in January after previously registering an interest.

    Snapshot: Mohamed Simakan

    “There were many teams on Simakan – Lyon, Aston Villa and Borussia Dortmund,” Di Frisco said.

    “I think these clubs, including AC Milan, will try to push again (in January). The boy has picked up where he left off, showing his qualities, and it is possible his admirers will also increase.”

    Milan allegedly had a bid rejected for him in the summer, and will only pursue other targets in January if they fail to land him again.

    The Serie A league leaders are also reportedly interested in another Ligue 1 star in Boubakary Soumare, though they face stiff competition from Man Utd.