Patrik Schick – the man who broke Scottish hearts on Monday at Euro 2020 – could have easily been a Newcastle United player.
The Czech Republic striker fired an impressive brace past Scotland in their first game at a major tournament since 1998, with his second already being dubbed as the goal of the competition after just one round of fixtures.
25-year-old Schick ended up joining Bayern Leverkusen last summer – scoring 13 goals in his debut season – but it was parent club Roma who were keen to offload the striker to Tyneside.
The Daily Mail reported last year that Schick was attracting serious interest from Newcastle – and even went as far as saying he was the club’s ‘no.1 target’ at one stage – while The Athletic also confirmed that we’d sent scouts to watch the 6ft 2′ striker.
Signing him and Wilson may not have been a realistic option last summer, but with our interest dating back 18 months and us still in the market for another forward a good year later, we may be regretting the fact Bayer Levekusen ended up beating us to a £24m deal.
Schick’s performance against Scotland showcased attributes to prove why he could undoubtedly hack it in the top flight.
Tall, srong in the air, technically sound and with a wicked left foot, he looked like a player who would be the perfect striker partner for the quicker, more predatory Wilson.
You get the impression that more impressive displays at the Euros could see Schick be linked with a big-money move.
Having watched him the other night for the first time, I’m already looking forward to seeing him back in action against Croatia on Friday; although my feelings may be slightly different when he walks out against England the following Tuesday!