Jules Kounde is a brilliant centre-back who Xavi considered as top priority for the Defence. He can be a great addition to his squad having nearly the same profile comparison with Virgil Van Dijk.
Here is a breakdown of why Xavi signed this gem and how he would fit his style of play. Ready? Let’s go!
Jules Kounde became Sevilla’s club signing when at age 20y, the Frenchman arrived from Bordeaux for €25m in the summer of 2019.
He was linked with Diego Carlos, who arrived from Nantes for €15m, their duo wasn’t talked about enough, crazy.
Jules Kounde has a pretty balanced profile with strengths in all three areas that we identify in the image below Via: @TotalAnalysis Attacking, passing and progression and defence. Kounde is an extremely progressive player for a CB with a brilliant output in terms of his ball-carrying with 1.84 progressive runs per 90.
He also progresses the ball well with his vertical passing game with 9.91 progressive passes per 90 and 7.47 passes to the final third per 90. His defensive cadent is reasonable but his low output for defensive duels per 90 (4.93) is likely down to a combination of team style and his positional sense, he does, still, have a high completion rate in terms of these duels with 72.41%.
…output in terms of his ball-carrying with 1.84 progressive runs per 90. He also progresses the ball well with his vertical passing game with 9.91 progressive passes per 90 and 7.47 passes to the final third per 90. His defensive cadent is reasonable but his low output for defensive duels per 90 (4.93) are likely down to a combination of team style and his positional sense, he does, still, have a high completion rate in terms of these duels with 72.41%
With Kounde's standing just 5'11, he shows off a brilliant heading ability. And able to take out rivals and also come out on top in aerial duels
He wins most of the duels, and alongside Carlos, he makes his team formidable in the air.
Kounde is equally adaptable at winning duels when dealing with delivers from the flank
Kounde is quick to anticipating and winning headers such as delivering in the box for quick anticipation of winning the header from rivals.
Jules Kounde lacks the skills in opponents’ penalty areas. Most aerials deliveries are given to him and is unable to convert them into goals
A good expect of it is he creates chances for a layoff and quite the dangerman if playing corners.
Kounde plays with the popular 4-3-3 formation and is also comfortable playing the 3-4-3 having 3 CBs on the back
He plays as a right centre-back and contests most of the duels in the middle third
And yeah, he plays as a right-back sometimes.
Kounde is pretty much not that aggressive. he can strategies a wait for any rival attacking opponent to attack the resistance at opportunities provided
Also needs improvements in his decision-making. Kounde’s positioning awareness is top class:
Kounde's marking of opponents in his zone is incredible
With a CF occupying kounde’s defensive zone and decides to drop deep, the Frenchman puts immediate pressure to force an error and intercept passes to regain possession.
Even with Jules Kounde stepping off his line, Sevilla is still left with a capable back four due to the defensive midfielder dropping between the centre-halves. Koundé uses this additional security to a great effect when he decides to step out of his defensive line.
1 v 1 Ability
Kounde is often the last defender when his team is attacking, . He’s ready to compete with an opponent in a one-on-one should they launch a counter
With his pace, he is capable of holding off the fastest of forwards and winning the ball nicely.
Koundé’s strengths revolve around his anticipation and calm personality but he does not shy away from a battle now and then.
He shows such great strength for his size when he is forced into physical duels.
Passing And Progressing
Kounde execute brilliant passing of the ball when mostly played at the right-hand Flank
Kounde doesn't quite have the long ball abilities and needs to improve in terms of his vision and decision making
He is a brilliant defender who shows maturity for a player so young and in positions in which youngsters tend to make mistakes a lot
Kounde doesn't concede many fouls in his position and is rarely booked, same qualities as Virgil, organised and prefers to go to the ground…
…and rather attempts to steal the ball while on his feet
He makes sound decisions based on the reference of his teammates as to when to step out and engage the opposition rivals.
Kounde style of play:
-Overall Physical profile
-Versatility to play a right-back
-Impact on possession
-Can get sucked into midfield when defending.
Despite kounde being at age 23y, his being compared to Van is intriguing, Kounde is a rare talent having potential and personality and thrives to be at his very best
He will succeed in Xavi's style of play either the 4-3-3 or 3-4-3 starting XI.
Personally came to recognize such a talent in a match against us, he had a great day winning a solo goal against Barcelona, crazy.