FC Schalke 04 have high interest in Monaco left back

PARIS, FRANCE - JANUARY 12: Fode Ballo-Toure of AS Monaco during the French League 1 match between Paris Saint Germain v AS Monaco at the Parc des Princes on January 12, 2020 in Paris France (Photo by Jeroen Meuwsen/Soccrates/Getty Images)
PARIS, FRANCE - JANUARY 12: Fode Ballo-Toure of AS Monaco during the French League 1 match between Paris Saint Germain v AS Monaco at the Parc des Princes on January 12, 2020 in Paris France (Photo by Jeroen Meuwsen/Soccrates/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit

FC Schalke 04 recently extended the contract of starting left back Bastian Oczipka, but they are looking for a long-term player at the position.

Bastian Oczipka has played every single minute of the 2019-2020 Bundesliga season for FC Schalke 04. Although he’s the every game starter at left back, Oczipka did show his versatility by playing solid football at the center back position when emergency option Weston McKennie dislocated his shoulder.

While Oczipka’s defending has been solid and his crosses have been as pinpoint as ever, Schalke need to consider developing a long-term successor at the position. Oczipka is still going on strong and recently signed an extension through the age of 34, but he’ll need to be phased into a veteran backup role by then. As his performance in the loss to Bayern Munich showed, Oczipka may only have one more year of being a starting-caliber player for a side with Champions League ambitions.

Therefore, Schalke are looking at young left back options around Europe. And according to a report from FootMercato.com, the Royal Blues are showing the most interest in Monaco’s 23-year-old left back Fode Ballo-Toure.

West Ham and Crystal Palace also have interest in Ballo-Toure, but it is Schalke who have been monitoring the versatile left back for “several months”.

It won’t be easy to pry Ballo-Toure from Monaco, since he is such a promising player and is at a  prestigious Ligue 1 club. Monaco could ask for upwards of 10 million euros from interested clubs in order to ward off interest, and it will be interesting to see how much interest a club with West Ham’s resources has in the player.

Next. Weston McKennie is on the outside looking in. dark

But it’s great to see that Ballo-Toure is on Schalke’s radar. He could be a great starting left back in the Bundesliga if a deal were to happen in the future. Ballo-Toure has positive traits as a defender, is a good passer at the position, and has completed 1.4 dribbles per game with 1.1 fouls drawn per game in 1,048 Ligue 1 minutes this season, per WhoScored.com