Fabian Schar has signed for Newcastle United.
The central defender joining Newcastle from Deportivo after the Spanish club were relegated.
The Swiss international first linked with a transfer to Newcastle three and a half years ago.
Fabian Schar signing a three year deal.
Official Newcastle United announcement:
Newcastle United have completed the signing of Swiss international Fabian Schär on a permanent deal from Deportivo La Coruña.
The defender – who has signed an initial three-year contract – becomes the Magpies’ fourth acquisition of the summer, following the permanent arrivals of Martin Dúbravka and Ki-Sung Yeung and the loan capture of Kenedy.
Schär played in three of his country’s four games at the recent World Cup in Russia, helping the Swiss to progress from Group E – along with Brazil – before missing their last-16 defeat to Sweden through suspension.
He made 25 appearances for Deportivo in La Liga last season, having moved to the Spanish outfit from 1899 Hoffenheim a year ago.
The 26-year-old said: “I’m really happy to be here. The club is a really big club for me. It has a big name, and it is a brilliant chance for me.
“I’m not like a typical defender. I, of course, defend, but I’m quite good with the ball – I like to play, I want to build up the game from behind, and I think that is a strength of mine. I have also scored some headers – that could also be a strength and hopefully I can use it here.
“I hope to start training with the team soon, and I’m looking forward to everything that’s coming. At the moment, I just want to get started.”
Manager Rafa Benítez added: “I’m really pleased to welcome Fabian to Newcastle United. He is an international, did well in the World Cup and has great experience.
“He adds competition in this position and that is a positive for the team.”
Schär – who has played 42 times for Switzerland all told – started out with hometown club Wil 1900 before linking up with Champions League regulars Basel in 2012, where he helped the RotBlau to a hat-trick of Swiss Super League titles.
He has already had a taste of playing at St. James’ Park, having turned out for the Swiss against Gabon in the 2012 Olympics’ football tournament.
The Mag – Earlier today (Thursday 26 July 2018):
Fabian Schar was reported on Wednesday to be expected on Tyneside very soon.
Sky Sports saying Newcastle had activated his release clause and the player would be leaving Deportivo for the Premier League.
They put the fee/release clause at £3m for the 26 year old centre-back who payed three times for Switzerland in this summer’s World Cup finals.
Now on Thursday morning, Fabian Schar has been photographed at Newcastle’s training ground.
Sky Sports saying the medical is now completed and finishing touches being sorted on the deal.
With Yoshinori Muto also said to have agreed a £9.5m move to Newcastle, Rafa is finally getting some extra bodies in, after a number of recent departures.
Fabian Schär has completed his Newcastle medical and is putting the finishing touches to his transfer from Deportivo La Coruña. Here he is at the NUFC training ground this morning. pic.twitter.com/h54J4RMCm5
— Keith Downie (@SkySports_Keith) July 26, 2018
The Mag – Wednesday 25 July 2018:
March 2015 saw Newcastle United first linked with Fabian Schar.
Over three years later it was reported on Monday that Newcastle were interested once again (see below).
Now 26, the central defender was relegated with Deportivo this past season and is reported to be desperate to get away, the Swiss international having a release clause in his contract.
This has been reported to be between £3m and £4m.
With Chancel Mbemba now out of the door and Florian Lejeune having a knee injury that Rafa Benitez is waiting anxiously on, to discover just how serious it is, it leaves only Clark and Lascelles as first team squad central defenders.
Unless of course you count Paul Dummett but then he is the club’s only reliable left-back…
The Mirror claimed this morning that a £3,5m release clause had been activated by Newcastle United.
That has been followed by reports in both Spain and Switzerland that the move is indeed happening.
Wednesday lunchtime has seen Sky Sports reporting that their information is that it is a £3m release clause that has been activated and that Fabian Schar is expected in Newcastle today for his medical.
The Mag – 23 July 2018:
It was back in March 2015 when Newcastle United were first claimed to be interested in Fabian Schar.
At the time the then 23 year old centre-back was playing for Basel but running down the final year of his contract.
The likes of Inter and Arsenal were also linked but in the end he signed for Hoffenheim, the Bundesliga club having to pay £3m youth development compensation after signing the defender.
Only 23 league starts followed in his two years there, before moving on to Deportivo la Coruna in summer 2017.
Now Newcastle United are said to be interested once again with The Mail reporting Rafa Benitez is looking at the player as a squad replacement for Chancel Mbemba, who has no future at Newcastle.
Fabian Schar is claimed to be keen to move after a disastrous year with the Spanish club, Deportivo le Coruna relegated, as the Swiss defender started 25 La Liga games and was unused on the bench nine times.
It isn’t exactly a plus point that it was Deportivo’s disastrous defending that was the main factor in their relegation, a massive 76 goals conceded and the next highest goals conceded goals being 74 and 61.
On a more positive note, Fabian Schar continues to be first choice for his country and played three times in this summer’s World Cup, helping his country get draws against Brazil and Costa Rica, as well as beating Serbia and Mitro 2-1.
Now 26, Schar is a decent age for a potential signing and has good experience already, plus he could be available for a relatively low fee. With Rafa Benitez having to look for bargains once again, it could be possible to once again make a profit if Mbemba leaves and Fabian Schar arrives. There are widespread media claims that the player has a release clause in his Deportivo contract, that release clause claimed to be £3m or £4m depending which reports you read.
The Mag – 11 March 2015:
Fabian Schar is the latest player linked with a move to Newcastle, the Swiss defender running his contract down and available at the end of the season.
United are widely reported today to be one of the clubs trying to get the centre-back to commit to a pre-contract before a summer move.
There would still be compensation payable for Schar’s youth development as he will still be under the age of 24 come the end of the season.
The defender and his teammates were given a right runaround on Tuesday night, Porto sticking four past them and knocking Basel out of the Champions League with a 5-1 aggregate win.
When it went to 3-0 on the night with half an hour to go and the tie decided, Schar was instantly taken out of the firing line.
The Swiss international is highly rated and has the added bonus of regularly adding goals, something that is a lost art these days for Newcastle’s central defenders. Despite his youth, Fabian Schar already has 24 goals for Basel and 4 for his country.
With 33 appearances in Europe, including 18 in the Champions League, he has no shortage of experience against quality players outside of the weak Swiss domestic league, with Basel well clear again this season as they look nailed on to land another league title.
The player’s profile has not surprisingly attracted attention, Arsenal and Inter having already been credited with interest which caused the player himself to make the following comments in January.
“I have read the transfer market rumours, they are normal at this time. I can say that without a doubt I think Inter are a top club and would be an ideal destination.”
“However, I have a contract which ties me to Basel and I am very happy here – at the moment I’m not thinking about anything else.”
There have been links with various Swiss based players in recent weeks and suggestions that Newcastle have now moved on to targeting both Belgium and Switzerland.
With players soon to be out of contract also appearing to be a popular group United are looking to target this summer, there will be fierce competition to be overcome if Newcastle are to land any credible ‘bargain’ signings.