Sven Botman on Newcastle United 'project' ahead of transfer confirmation
The Magpies’ firm interest in Botman emerged last winter as they looked to secure the Lille defender back in the January transfer window.
Despite two bids, Newcastle weren’t able to reach an agreement with Lille for the Netherlands under-21 international.
Now the summer transfer window is open, Newcastle finally look to have got their man despite numerous delays.
The Magpies have agreed a £35million fee with Lille for Botman, who passed his medical on Monday.
This is despite reports from Italy suggesting that Botman had no intention of signing for Newcastle and his heart was set on AC Milan.
Milan ultimately couldn’t match Lille’s asking price for the 22-year-old as Newcastle swooped in.
And based on comments directly from Botman himself, he has always been keen on a move to Newcastle and was simply waiting for Lille to accept a bid.
Speaking earlier this year, Botman told Ziggo Sport: “I can confirm both Newcastle and AC Milan were concrete options this winter.
"Both were good options for me. I assume that I will take a good step in my career next summer.
“Everyone says about Newcastle: ‘it's all about money’. But it's a very nice project, if you look at where Manchester City and Paris Saint-Germain started.
"I think it would be very nice to be part of that, but of course Milan is a beautiful club.”
Botman’s comments came in spite of Newcastle sitting 19th in the Premier League table back in January. Now they are in a much more favourable position with their top flight status secure.
The defender wants his future sorted for the start of pre-season in July and it looks as though he will get his wish with Newcastle’s players set to return on Friday.
“I accepted the situation [in January],” Botman told L’Equipe last season. “There were opportunities [to leave].
"But we also had the Champions League to play in, my first one. And we were in a good position in Ligue 1. I think these offers will come back [in the summer].
“If things go as planned, then yes [I will leave Lille]. After that, we’ll see. I haven’t decided anything.”
Earlier this month, Botman confirmed that both Newcastle and AC Milan are interested in signing him.
"[Newcastle and AC Milan] are interested, yes," he told Algemeen Dagblad. "I can't and won't say much more about it."What I want? Taking a nice step towards a nice competition. I am also looking forward to a new step."I am aware of what I want. That is not necessarily to that club or that competition. You weigh all kinds of things and then the total picture has to suit you. I must have a very good feeling about it.
"I intend to take a step. Talks are underway now.
"I won’t go into all of that, but it’s going well. I do hope that the transfer for the new season is completed. Preferably also for the pre-season, yes.
"Things are in progress and I hope there will be more clarity before the pre-season.”