Two days ago, Newcastle United announced they had agreed a deal in principle to sign Sven Botman.
The Magpies even confirmed they overcame competition from European clubs to secure the defender’s services. He has completed his medical and agreed terms for a five-year deal with the Tyneside club.
According to De Telegraaf¸ the 22-year-old took a break from his vacation to seal the ‘dream transfer’ to Newcastle. The newspaper also managed to get an interview with Eddie Howe’s new signing.
When asked to describe his last 48 hours, Botman said: “Hectic. Insane actually. I have earned my Airmiles again. My transfer from SC Heerenveen to Lille was a nice step, but you can tell from everything that this is a mega deal.
“A lot is coming at me. Although that is partly my own fault, because I want everything, from house to car and from bank account to English phone number, to be arranged before the training sessions start.”
Newcastle invested €40m to secure the Dutchman’s services, but the price tag associated with the operation is something the player doesn’t want to focus on.
“No. And I don’t want to think about that at all. This is how the football world has developed and how the transfer market works at the moment,” Botman explained.
“I cannot help that. And hopefully I’m still that sober boy from Badhoevedorp. That €40m does indicate how much Newcastle United wanted me. That gives confidence and it is now up to me to repay that.”
AC Milan also showed interest in the centre-back. On his decision to pick the English club over the Serie A winners, the Dutchman said: “Ultimately, Newcastle United’s great project, in combination with playing in the Premier League, was the deciding factor.”
“That last one has been a dream my whole life. AC Milan also gave me a good feeling, but Newcastle United felt just a little better in the end.
“I really wanted to go to Newcastle United in January, because I also heard, and that’s a cliché, I know, that a train like this doesn’t pass by very often. But the clubs couldn’t figure it out.
“And afterwards this might be better, because I can now experience a lot of preparation and I was able to say goodbye to Lille in a beautiful way. That club deserved it. Staying wasn’t a punishment for me in January either, because I knew there were two great Champions League games against Chelsea coming up. I now have that baggage too.”