With just two games left to play in France’s Ligue 1, we could be looking at a surprise rare champion.
Paris Saint-Germain have won seven of the last eight titles but Lille currently top the table with a three-point gap over the Qatari owned superclub.
The likes of Turkey forward Burak Yilmaz have driven their side to have the trophy in one hand – their destiny firmly in both of their own hands – while young defender Sven Botman has stood out at the back.
The 21-year-old Dutch centre-back has now been linked with moves to Manchester United and Liverpool after making a £7m switch and signing a five-year contract with the French side last summer.
In an interview with The Athletic, the defender – who has made appearances in 35 of Lille’s 36 league games on their way to a potential title – has urged the clubs to seal his ‘dream move’.
Botman said: “It is a good compliment when you hear these clubs are interested. I’m lying if I say it’s not interesting me — it’s the first time such big clubs are linked to me — but it was early days because in January I was only at Lille for half a season.
“If I’m honest, the Premier League is one of the leagues I dreamed about… but also Serie A, La Liga, the Bundesliga. The Premier League is something special. It’s the football I really like and that fits me. The style of play, the emotion; I really like to see the fans with such big emotions in the stands. It is a beautiful competition I really like to watch and did for pretty much all my life.”
Botman did clarify his situation at Lille though, claiming he’s more than happy at the club: “But I’m good at the moment with Lille. I’m really enjoying this year, I’m enjoying playing a lot. I learn a lot and I still have to improve a lot. I’m not complaining about my situation right now, I’m happy at the moment.
“For my ambitions, yes, of course, I want to achieve as much as possible. I hope to make a big, beautiful step for me. We’ll have to see in the future if that is possible or not.”
The defender progressed through the Ajax youth system and could follow in the footsteps of recent mover Donny van de Beek – who switched directly from Ajax to Old Trafford, although not exactly seamlessly.
With both clubs on the lookout for an option to bolster their defence – Liverpool particularly if injuries continue to ravage their squad – would you take the addition of Lille defender Sven Botman?