Nice jobFollowing on from the discussion with reachingforthestars :
Having watched Todibo's home debut live, and then 3/4 of his subsequent few games for Toulouse, I posted a little heads up in the Players Worth Keeping an Eye On thread in Sep 2018, saying he has some good qualities.
I think they subsequently stopped picking him because he'd refused to sign a contract with because he'd got wind of Barca sniffing, they were going to wait until summer 2019 to bring in in for free, but decided to pay 1m and bring him in January.
After making 2 appearances in La Liga back end of 18/19, he made 2 more the front end of 19/20 before going to Schalke on loan in January 2020. Here's the thing, apparently it's a loan with a 25+5m buy out clause.
I decided to watch a couple of games to see how he's looking after playing so little football (4 league games in 2019). Got to say, from the two games I've watched so far, there's a lot to like.
He's got all the physical/athletic attributes you want for a CB. Tall, strong, pretty quick, and mobile upper and lower body. He generally does well in physical duels and tussles.
Changes direction pretty well. He's aggressive and tenacious.
He seems to read the game pretty well, he looks around to check what's going on defensively and repositions. I'm not sure, I need to watch some more games, but maybe he can lose concentration on the odd occasion between phases of play, but he is only 20yo and I'm not even sure it's endemic, or just situational and due to inexperience.
Defensively what I like most is he's proactive not just reactive in his defending. He sees what's happening and uses his speed, aggression and dexterity to press up and win the ball, cut moves/breaks off early and he has the common sense to take the free kick if it means stopping a break, knowing he can get away with this in advanced areas of the pitch. He's got a brain.
But where this boy really fucking excels is with the ball. I can't remember seeing too many CB's - especially aged 20 having their first handful of games - be this technically adept and confident on the ball.
I've seen him come unstuck a couple of times, he got a bit bullied in one passage of play by Lukaku in the Inter v Barca game, but Lukaku can be a bit of monster and Todibo is only 20yo and has only played about 20 league games in France, Spain, Germany spread over two seasons.
I think for 25+5m he's an absolute fucking steal - 40m for Sanxhez, 80m McGuire, - there's a bit of the VVD about him and at 20yo has bags of development and improvement in him.
This first bunch of clips shows him up against Martinez/Inter who's a real fucking livewire, and despite him making life difficult, Todibo generally handles him, doesn't really lose any of the duels, using a combination of physicality and tenacity/dexterity to come on largely on top (even though one of them subsequently leads to a Likaku scoring, it wasn't down to Todibo who wins his duel).
Also bare in mind this is a 20yo playing the biggest game of his young career (and about his 15th career game).
This one he deals with Lukaku
More examples of Todibo's combination of anticipation, aggression and strength to win duels:
These clips show him reading the play and using his speed and tenacity to squeeze up and suffocate breaks before they happen. I really like a CB who can do this without fear of getting spun. Players like Dier and Alderweireld just can't do this, for fear of being spun and left for dead.
And these are some of my favourites, showing his composure and technical ability when in possession. We have players playing as CM's over the last three years that don't have this, let alone CB's. There are very few CB's around this comfortable on the ball, and it's not just that he's technically comfortable, he sprints away from pressing oppo's and then plays good vertical passes. Composure, pace and passing under pressure. Imagine Sanchez doing this (or any of our current bunch of CB's)
This was the only real negative moment I could find. He gets out muscled by Lukaku. Not great, but I've seen others bullied by Lukaku, and again, he is still 20yo and learning. At 20yo VVD was playing for Gronigan and then Celtic. This is a 20yo playing away at Inter.
Here's some bonus clips from him paying for Schalke away at Cologne. Showing many of the same types of traits, plus a long raking diagonal that goes straight to feet, which we didn't see against Inter:
Bottom line, I think this kid is well worth a punt at 30-40m. I'd be all over this if Schalke either choose not to or even of they do, offer them a chance to make a quick 15m. Even if the kid turns out not to be the next greatest thing, he's got enough about him to be a very good CB and some unique qualities. A rare combo of athletic/Physical and cerebral/technical. I can see why he found his way onto Barca's dada before he'd even kicked a ball, I'm just not sure why they are prepared to offload him already, although they will make a quick 24m? I need to watch some more games where he's under more pressure, and will update if I find more weaknesses.
I think I watched the Inter game at the time, and I weren't really blown away. Doesn't matter, I still believe he'll become a star. The VVD comparison is a good one looking at their stature and genes. Van Dijk at Celtic was a good player, but he was still doing his best Foyth impression, stepping up in challenges misreading them. At the time I was surprised Southampton got the deal and no bigger team went in for him.
So with Five 's question about the Kabak appeal, it's no so much about what the guys aren't doing, but more a question about what they are already capable of doing at such a young age. I'll back Todibo because of his agility (I guess that's racist - reversed). If he can work on his leadership, I can't see why he couldn't become every bit as good as Van Dijk.
Now you've done such good work here, I'll just dump another name you can keep an eye out for and I'll go back and complete Netflix for a 2nd time.
Matchoi Djaló from Paços de Ferreira. 16 years old so he's only been handed the odd minutes a couple of times, and that was as a winger. He's doing some nice twisting and turning so might be another Modric/Frenkie de Jong in disguise. I don't think Paços de Ferreira could ask of too much for a player, so I wouldn't mind the gamble. But I guess Brexit means no player can join a British side until turning 18? Wow, that would even mean that Camavinga couldn't be signed until next December