The player of Beninese descent has produced solid defensive displays for Julen Lopetegui’s team since he arrived from Bordeaux in the summer
The 21-year-old joined the Ramon Sanchez Pizjuan Stadium outfit on a five-year deal from Bordeaux last July, and he is having an impressive debut campaign in Seville.
Kounde has played 16 games in La Liga this season, winning 2.4 aerial duels per game despite having a height of 1.78m, and he thinks he is being targeted by the opposition.
“Yes, I win more head-to-head duels than Ramos because the opponents dare not play long on Ramos’ head,” Kounde told Onze Mondial.
“I am often targeted, I feel it. And sometimes, it is pointed out to me. After the matches, I am often told about it. When I re-watch my matches, I realise that I play a lot more aerial duels than the others.
“They say it will be easier against Kounde, and me, it motivates me. And it’s a part of my game that I work on because I know I’m going to be targeted. If I face a striker of 1.90 m who has the ability to jump high, it will necessarily be more complicated. So, I prepare by working to be ready on matchdays.”
Kounde has played for France at U20 level, but he can still switch his allegiance to Benin on the international scene.