This summers transfer window is sure to be one of the most entertaining in recent memory – with Louis van Gaal all but assured to bring in a wealth of personnel to Old Trafford, Chelsea and Liverpool likely to bring in reinforcements to not only chase Manchester City but reload for Champions League, and Arsenal looking to build on their FA Cup success, there have been a host of names being thrown around in transfer rumors on a daily basis. One name that has not been heavily included? Fabian Schar.
You do not need to look that hard if you are curious as to the type of player that Schar is – rewind back to Chelsea’s two group stage matches in the Champions League for the evidence. Still only at the tender age of 22, Schar is a very complete center-back, one that gave Chelsea a real mess of it and, truth be told, was arguably one of the best overall center-backs during the entire group stage. He has pace to burn for his position, is highly mobile, a menace in the air and in the box on set-pieces, very solid with the ball at his feet and is technically better than most center-backs you will come to find. So why has Schar not registered on the radar’s of a host of European clubs? He plays in the Swiss League, and not many top European clubs are willing to take a risk on players that ply their trade there.
The success of Josip Drmic in the Bundesliga in his first year at FC Nurnberg after moving from FC Zurich may well give bigger clubs a moment of reconsideration. Schar’s club-mate Mohamed Salah made the switch from FC Basel to Chelsea in January, and while his first months in England were not the best, that could easily be attributed to his being misused and not his lack of talent as a player. While Schar is sure to be a hit in the Bundesliga, where pressure on younger players is far less greater and the future is the higher concern, I truly believe the Wil-born defender has what it takes to be a wonderful addition to the Premier League. His high mobility, ruthlessness in the box on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball, good pace and technical ability are key assets that top clubs in England crave in a center-back. While my personal bias to Arsenal would love to see him at the Emirates, I truly feel that a move to Manchester United or Tottenham would suit the Swiss international quite well.
With Switzerland looking to prove their doubters wrong in Brazil this summer, Schar is primed to partner Johan Djourou in the middle of the Swiss back-four, despite having the more experienced Philippe Senderos available. Arsene Wenger has long been an admirer of Schar, but should he produce displays that mimic his performances this past season in Europe, it is highly possible that he may find himself with many suiters trying to knock down his door in Basel.
Currently valued at only 8million pounds, Schar’s asking price may rise to 15million given his age, but for a defender proven in Champions League that is as young as he is, that is a steal. If that does not convince you, maybe his 3 goals in only 5 caps for Switzerland will. Keep your eye on him this summer, and do not be surprised if he is playing in England come August.