Barcelona agree £41.85m deal for Jules Kounde: Decoding his stats
Barcelona continue to go big in the ongoing 2022 summer transfer window as they have agreed a deal to sign Sevilla defender Jules Kounde. According to a report in The Guardian, Barca will pay £41.85m to Sevilla for the player's services. Notably, Chelsea had agreed a deal worth £55m but the player changed his mind after speaking to Barca manager Xavi. Here's more.
- Barca are desperate to be back in terms of winning titles after seeing Real Madrid dominate of late.
- Despite the financial crisis, Barca managed to find a way in getting established names.
- They spent £42.6m on Bayern Munich star Robert Lewandowski and £55m on Raphinha.
- Kounde is regarded highly and is one of the leading defenders.
- He will be a pivotal asset for Barca.
Kounde started his career with French side Bordeaux. He went on to make 70 appearances for the club across two seasons, scopring four goals. He joined Spanish side Sevilla next and across three seasons the Frenchman made 133 appearances, scoring nine times. He has also made 11 appearances for France, winning the UEFA Nations League 2020-21. He has won the Europa League with Sevilla.
Kounde impressed largely in the 2021-22 season for Sevilla. As per Squawka, his numbers per 90 minutes in La Liga 2021-22 stands out. The Frenchman contested 8.9 duels, made 1.4 tackles, and clocked 4.2 aerial duels. He had a success rate of 60.63% in terms of aerial duels and 64.34% in relation to ground duels.
Kounde played 32 league games and a total of 2,737 minutes last season in La Liga for Sevilla. As per Squawka, Kounde made 199 ball recoveries, had a pass accuracy of 88.85%, contested 270 duels, and made 40 tackles. He also completed 24 take-ons, contested 127 aerial duels, and 143 ground duels. He made 98 clearances, 21 interceptions, and 18 blocks.
As per Opta, in all competitions last season, Kounde went on to complete 2,542 passes, made 3,425 touches, and had 450 progressive carries. He made a total of 44 appearances last season.
Barcelona have built a solid side under Xavi. Defensively, Barca have Christensen and Kounde as primary choices as central defenders. Eric Garcia, Ronald Araujo, and Gerard Pique provide depth. Xavi has also expressed that he can use Frenkie de Jong as a central defender. Besides, they have Sergino Dest, Sergi Roberto, Jordi Alba, and Alejandro Balde as full-backs. Araujo can fit in as well.
Chelsea were leading the race to get hold of Kounde after signing Napoli's Kalidou Koulibaly. After losing both Antonio Rudiger and Andreas Christensen, the priority for Chelsea was getting their replacements. However, Barca managed to hijack the deal for Kounde and Chelsea now find themselves in a position of bother. They failed to get Nathan Ake and saw Matthijs de Ligt join Bayern Munich.