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Who Is Alexander Isak, Newcastles Swedish International Taking The EPL By Storm

Alexander Isak’s goals have helped to fore Newcastle to the brink of Champions League qualification.The Magpies’ £60million record signing has scored seven goals in his last seven appearances, including a double in Sunday’s 6-1 demolition of Tottenham, to take his tally for the club he joined last August to 10 in 15 Premier League appearances.Here, the PA news agency takes a took at a 23-year-old, who is rapidly establishing himself as a new hero on Tyneside.

Background

Born in the Stockholm suburb of Solna and of Eritrean heritage, Isak began his professional career with home-town club AIK before
Borussia Dortmund took a chance on the then 17-year-old in January 2017. After a loan spell in the Netherlands with Willem II, he left the Bundesliga for Spain and Real Sociedad, and that was where he really started to find his feet. His three seasons in LaLiga yielded 131 appearances and 43 goals, as well as a Copa del Rey winners’ medal and three top-six finishes.

Arrival

Our new centre-forward. 😍 pic.twitter.com/CcSE1qUGzG

— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) August 26, 2022

Isak’s capture ended a long-running search for a striker as Eddie Howe was allowed to smash the record £40million the club had paid for Joelinton in July 2019 to get his man in August last year. He was Newcastle’s fourth signing of the window following a permanent deal for full-back Matt Targett and swoops for keeper Nick Pope and defender Sven Botman, and his fee took the new owners’ spending spree through the £200m mark in just two transfer windows.

Debut

The signs were there from the off that Newcastle might have a player on their hands when Isak announced himself in style with a stunning strike 38 minutes into his debut at Liverpool. He was unfortunate to see a second ruled out for a marginal offside decision, and his evening ended in further disappointment when Fabio Carvalho won it for the hosts eight minutes into stoppage time.

Style

The 39-times-capped Sweden international is not a traditional centre-forward in the mould of the club’s record goalscorer Alan Shearer – indeed, he admits heading the ball is not one of his strengths. However, his ability to play across the front line, his pace, willingness to drop deep and link the play and eye for goal have proved significant weapons since he shook off the thigh injury which sidelined him between September and January.

Impact

Absolutely world class. 💫 pic.twitter.com/yAgLzy1Wkr

— Newcastle United FC (@NUFC) April 23, 2023

Howe’s preferred 4-3-3 formation requires just one out-and-out frontman and, while he has not ruled out the possibility of Isak and Callum Wilson lining up together from the start, to date he has started with one or the other. Such has been the Swede’s form in recent weeks, however, that it is he who has been the man in possession, although the competition between the two men for the starting berth has spurred on both.

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