Young Polish duo from Brighton are set to make waves in the Premier League
Returning in the final throes of the summer transfer window, Brighton announced the double capture of young Polish duo Jakub Moder and Michal Karbownik for a total of £ 14.5million from Lech Poznan and Legia Warsaw.
It was a move that seemed to go largely unnoticed as both players were immediately on loan to their former clubs, but January is here, recall options have been exercised and the Seagulls are now set to release two of the players. the most promising in Europe in the Premier League.
At £ 9.5million and already international in its own right, Moder has made headlines. The fees paid by Brighton were a record for an Ekstraklasa player and saw the Seagulls secure his signing ahead of Galatasaray and RB Leipzig, who were both interested.
The 21-year-old midfielder made his debut for Lech in the 2017/18 season and has since gone to play 56 times, scoring nine goals. register nine assists and captain the team on occasion. He has six Polish caps to his name and scored his first international goal in November’s friendly 2-0 victory over Ukraine with a tap-in.
This strike did not conform to Moder’s normal scoring method. He has a reputation for achieving successful goals and he can choose a forward pass, a quality Brighton has sorely missed this season – with fans frustrated with side passes followed by side passes every time the Seagulls reach the edge of the opposing surface.
At 6’3, Moder adds height to a Brighton side that is lacking in this department once you move away from a defense with Dan Burn, Lewis Dunk and Adam Webster. Graham Potter values versatility above almost any other trait and Moder certainly brings that to the party. He was deployed by Lech as a traditional central midfielder, holding midfielder, number 10, on both flanks. and as a center-forward.
With so many strings to his bow, Moder will likely end up becoming a dynamic, box-to-box midfielder. There are a lot of similarities to be made between him and Yves Bissouma. Both can pick a pass, both are able to advance with the ball at their feet and both have an eye for the spectacular when it comes to shooting from a distance.
Bissouma also moved to England at the age of 21 without anyone knowing what position he would hold in Brighton. It wasn’t until Potter decided to use him as a defensive midfielder after Dale Stephens was suspended in December 2019 that Bissouma became the first name on the roster, becoming the Seagulls’ best player. and one of the Premier League’s most coveted midfielders. .
Real Madrid, Manchester United, Liverpool and Arsenal have all been linked with a big money transfer for Bissouma. If anyone is willing to pay an amount that reflects Bissouma’s worth at Brighton – and at the moment it’s probably over £ 50million considering how important it is to the Seagulls’ chances of survival in the Premier League – then Potter can have a replacement ready to go. in Moder.
If Moder seems like a reason to get excited, Karbownik is even more so. At just 19, he’s already a full-fledged Polish international and has an Ekstraklasa winner’s medal in his collection after helping Legia win the title in the 2019/20 season.
Karbownik has been shortlisted for the Golden Boy Award 2020, the annual award given by the Italian sports newspaper Tuttosport for the world’s best under-21 players. Along with Karbownik, there were people like Alphonso Davies, Mason Greenwood, Ansu Fati, Jadon Sancho, Phil Foden, Bukayo Saka, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Erling Braut Haaland; not a bad company.
His exploits with Legia have seen him linked to some of the biggest clubs in Europe. Real Madrid, Barcelona, Tottenham, Napoli, Dynamo Moscow, Sevilla and PSV Eindhoven all watched Karbownik, and Barca were so interested that they formulated a plan to sign him and send him on loan to Real Betis for the first year of his contract at Camp. Nou until Brighton steals a march to get him to the Amex for just £ 5million.
Like Moder, Karbownik is a versatile player. His ability to play right-back, left-back and as a midfielder has compared him to 2014 World Cup winner German captain Phillip Lahm. As for the current Brighton player he looks like the more, the links between Karbownik and Tariq Lamptey are there for everyone.
Karbownik is quick and loves to bombard forward, a fact reflected both in his position as one of the top 10 full-backs for the ball in the Ekstraklasa last season and his return of eight assists in 47 appearances for Legia.
That Karbownik is equally comfortable on both sides is huge for Potter. Lamptey’s speed and explosiveness naturally led to hamstring issues and although Joel Veltman proved a capable substitute at right-back when Lamptey was injured, the Netherlands international doesn’t possess the same threat of attack that Lamptey – understandable given that it is above all. a center back.
On the other side of the pitch, Brighton were lucky that Solly March stayed in shape. March’s reinvention as the full-back has been one of the Seagulls’ biggest successes of the season, even suggesting he could be in line for an England call given the scarcity of options available for Gareth Southgate on the back left wing. When Mars was away, Potter lined up Burn in his place. Burn looked like a fish out of the water as a full back, it’s not his fault as he is truly a 6’7 center-back.
Beyond March and Lamptey, Brighton’s winged rear cabinet is pretty bare. Karbownik changes that. He can step in on the right when Lamptey is in the treatment room or needs a rest and do the same for March on the left. Whenever one of the Mars or Lamptey is missing, Brighton doesn’t carry the same threat of attack and can often appear off balance as a result. The arrival of Karbownik should mean that the effectiveness of Potter’s 3-4-3 is suddenly less blunted if his prime full-backs are absent.
In the past, Potter has tended to carefully manage young players entering the senior squad for the first time at Brighton. Lamptey was signed from Chelsea last January but didn’t make his team debut until after the lockdown. Alexis Mac Allister is becoming a regular on the first team just a year after being brought in from Boca Juniors, while Steven Alzate and Aaron Connolly have had their playing time managed.
Moder and Karbownik have more reasons than most for wanting to make an immediate impression. They will likely have to play regular first-team football to keep their place in the Polish squad for the delayed Euro 2020 finals this summer.
It remains to be seen whether Potter is ready to throw them straight into the deep in order to help them achieve their international ambitions, but what we do know is that Brighton has two serious young talents on their hands who have all they need. takes to take the Premier League by storm. Watch this place.