Jonathan David has been in the headlines since joining Lille last summer and has brought positive change to the struggling Lille side this season. Despite having a poor start to the campaign, the defending Ligue 1 champions have recovered and with their last 3 national games slowly progressing up the league standings.
In his last game, he beat Marseille 2-0 and both goals were discord for none other than the young Jonathan David. The player has adapted well to his new system under Jocelyn Gourvennec. Here’s everything you need to know about Jonathan David, Lille’s new rising star who is on the verge of making it big in Europe.
FROM HAITI TO LEAGUE 1 CHAMPION
Jonathan has had an interesting childhood. Who would have thought that a boy born in New York and raised in Haiti would play for one of the biggest soccer clubs in Europe. He started playing soccer at the age of 6 when he moved to Ottawa, Canada and has now become one of the first names on his national team and is nicknamed the ‘Canadian Pearl’ by his fans.
He began playing professional soccer for a youth club at the age of 10 and from there he rose through the ranks of the local leagues and in 2018, his performances earned him a place at the Gent club in Belgium. Playing soccer in Europe is everything Jonathan has always wanted since he got involved in the sport and therefore he seized the opportunity and never looked back. His strong performances in Belgium earned him a transfer to Lille in January 2020 for a transfer fee of around £ 25 million and he has taken Ligue 1 by storm.
JONATHAN DAVID’S CONTRIBUTION IN LILLE’S TITLE RACE
Jonathan David joined Lille in the 2020 summer transfer period when Lille was recovering from a disappointing previous season and thus the path was quite unexpected. Kovac Jonathan David added in the thick of it at the start of the season even though he is a player who has not played such a level of football before.
Initially, Jonathan struggled a lot with his performances, but returned to Lille’s style of football in the second half of the season. In just 29 appearances in the starting lineup, their performances in the final months of the league since February gave Lille the boost that allowed them to steal the league title right under the noses of PSG and Monaco.
He scored 13 goals that season and even in his last game against Angers, he scored the title winning goal that pushed them 1 point past PSG. Jonathan David wins games for Lille and that’s all a coach can ask for from his front row. He is actively involved in the liaison play having started his career as an attacking midfielder and it is no secret that Jonathan knows how to beat goalkeepers.
THE MAN FROM LILLE IN THE CENTER OF ATTENTION
Lille got off to a terrible start to their new season with their new coach, Jocelyn Gourvennec. They failed to register a win in the first 3 games, which caused them to fall to the lower middle table. While his overall team hasn’t put on the best display, 24-year-old Jonathan David hasn’t let that affect his personal form. The player has scored 6 goals so far and has had an Xg (expected goals) of 0.86 and is only his second striker. This is a testament to how fierce he can be in any position, given how fluid his game is.
He makes 1.28 chances to score and has 2.27 attempts per game, he is the complete attacking monster that can lead Lille to great things. Jonathan has yet to make an impact in the Champions League group stage and if he also finds his rhythm in Europe, Lille will have no problem qualifying for the round of 16. The player aims to play for one of Europe’s giant clubs and Lille is the perfect place for him to hone his skills and become a sensational transfer target.
Players such as Rafael Leao, Nicolas Pepe and Victor Osimhen have been picked up from Lille and Jonathan David could soon make the list, with Liverpool being one of the parties interested in his signing.