Schalke 04 loanee Nabil Bentaleb appears to be in safe hands at Newcastle United…
Having been humiliated at the hands of Bayern Munich at the weekend, it’s easy for fans of Die Knappen to be down in the dumps. However, something rather important happened at the weekend in England which should come as good news to Schalke 04.
Nabil Bentaleb, who was sent out on loan from Schalke earlier this transfer window, has played his first match at his new club, Newcastle United. It was a 0-0 draw but both Newcastle and Schalke fans can take great pleasure in Nabil Bentaleb obtaining some crucial minutes for the club.
Having not played a professional game all season, Steve Bruce decided to throw Bentaleb in during an FA Cup fourth-round tie to Oxford United. He wanted to play the full 90 minutes but the experienced manager was forced to take him off after the 80-minute mark. Still, he will soon be back to full match fitness if this continues.
According to The Shields Gazette, Newcastle manager and veteran English manager, Steve Bruce, has heaped a lot of praise and trust on Bentaleb. Following the 0-0 draw to Oxford United, the manager spoke about Bentaleb’s future at the club and his comments were interesting.
"“I thought Bentaleb did okay. It’s his first game for four months and he nearly got through it. He tired towards the end, which is normal, I expected him to, but he’ll be fine.” – Steve Bruce (quotes via the Shields Gazette)"
It would appear that Bentaleb’s loan club is instilling a lot of trust in him and are willing to give him the full 90 minutes if he can handle it. This is good news for Schalke 04 because, despite him not featuring in Germany this season, Bentaleb is an excellent player who can provide plenty to the starting eleven.
He is graceful with the ball at his feet and he likes to play in all three thirds. Occupying the box-to-box midfielder role, Newcastle fans can expect him to help out in the final third and use his footwork to the best of his ability.
The midfield competition is heating up at Schalke. With star man Amine Harit proving irreplaceable in the starting eleven and Suat Serdar being as consistent as ever, Bentaleb should keep his head down in the Premier League and learn all there is to learn from the Newcastle camp.
There is a place for him in this Schalke side and this loan move will do him the world of good should he use it correctly.
What do you think? Do you think Nabil Bentaleb deserves another chance to prove his worth to David Wagner if he returns to the Veltins Arena?