After two season as Paris Saint-Germain’s second best left-back, Lucas Digne is set to join Roma in a loan deal worth €1.5 million with an option to buy next summer for €16.5 million.
The move comes as no surprise as Paris Saint-Germain manager Laurent Blanc revealed during the preseason that Digne “…very clearly asked to leave” and his omission from the lineup in the Ligue 1 opener last Friday all but confirmed the former Lille man will not play for Paris again this season.
The loan deal benefits both player and club. Digne will have the opportunity to display his talents ahead of Euro 2016 and PSG will likely have the player back in the squad next season as Roma are unlikely to pay the transfer fee it will cost to keep him at the Stadio Olimpico.
After the high of signing Angel Di Maria from Manchester United, Digne’s departure certainly brings Paris supporters back down to earth. The concern is that while Maxwell has performed amazingly well for his age, there’s still a need for depth at the left-back position. PSG need to find a player that can challenge Maxwell and can add a bit of pace and quality in the attack.
Given PSG’s needs, the two names you hear the most at the moment are Layvin Kurzawa from AS Monaco and FC Lorient’s Raphaël Guerreiro.
Kurzawa ticks all the boxes and is in great form, scoring the winning goal in the Côte d’Azur derby to open the season. He won’t come cheap though. The asking price for Kurzawa will be upwards of €20 million, which is a hefty fee for a player that would come with the same sorts of demands as Digne. The 22-year-old will want to start over Maxwell ahead of Euro 2016 and while his talent might be able to make that a reality, I can’t see PSG paying that high of a transfer fee after just signing Di Maria for €63 million.
The favorite to replace Digne at the moment has to be Lorient’s Guerreiro. The Portugal international (who was actually born in the suburbs of Paris) can play on the left side of the midfield or left-back and is much more attack-minded than Digne and Kurzawa, scoring seven goals last season. When you consider his talent and the added bonus of being able to speak French and Portuguese (PSG feature five Brazillian players), Guerreiro to PSG makes all the sense in the world.
However, the capital club are not alone in their admiration for Guerreiro. Reports out of Spain have Atletico Madrid ready to meet Lorient’s asking price, which is rumored to be somewhere around €10 million. It’s believed the player would prefer to play closer to his home town so that makes Paris the leaders to land Guerreiro at the moment. Look for action to pick up once Digne’s loan deal is officially announced.