The news today is that Newcastle will have to battle with other clubs to secure the signature of utility player Geremi from Chelsea. Aston Villa have let two of their full backs go in ex-Newcastle player Aaron Hughes – to Fulham for â‚¤1M, and Jlloyd Samuels – to Bolton on a fee transfer.
It is reported today that Geremi is within their sights and will provide a real threat to Newcastle in their efforts to capture the Cameroon International.
The last we had any news on Geremi was last Wednesday when Sam Allardyce spoke about the potential deal. This is what Sam had to say at that time:
“Geremi is something we would like to pursue, but many other clubs in the Premier League will be doing exactly the same thing as Newcastle.
“Hopefully we can persuade him – if we get the opportunity – to join this football club and not the others who will be chasing him as well as us.
It is a long way from done, but there is an interest there and hopefully we can progress it over the next few days.”
Let’s hope we have made some progress with the Chelsea utility player (full back, defensive midfield) because the news is that Aston Villa owner Randy Lerner will be jetting in from the USA to assist Martin O’Neill to wrap up a couple of signings as soon as possible. Geremi is definitely one of their targets. Both Aston Villa and Newcastle have Billionaire owners in Lerner and Ashley -so it will be a fight to sell the vision of the club â€“ plus what each club can offer in terms of wages. Geremi’s contract runs out today we understand and he will then be a free agent.
We’re not sure if Sam has talked directly yet with Geremi â€“ certainly he hadn’t by last Wednesday. But maybe by now he’s at least managed to get to Geremi via cell phone – Geremi was said to be on vacation last week. One advantage we do have is that he enjoyed his year long loan deal at Middlesbrough and really likes the north-east area. Hopefully he’ll also enjoy playing in front of 52,000 fanatical Geordie fans at each home game â€“ and that might just do it for us (crowds at Villa Park are still surprisingly weak).
But it’s a good way to judge the attractiveness of Newcastle under Ashley and Allardyce â€“ to see which club Geremi finally chooses. We must still be in with a good chance.
Some playing information on the Cameroon International:
Geremi was part of the gold medal-winning Cameroon team at the 2000 Summer Olympics and also represented Cameroon at the 2002 World Cup and the 2004 and 2006 African Nations Cups.
Prior to joining Chelsea in 2003, GÃ©rÃ©mi played for Cerro PorteÃ±o 6 games 0 goals), Genclerbirligi (57 games 9 goals), Real Madrid (45 games 0 goals), and Middlesbrough (on loan â€“ 33 games 7 goals).
He was Middlesbrough’s player of the season for 2002-03 and then in 2003, Geremi was taken to Chelsea by then Blues manager Claudio Ranieri after Chelsea agreed a â‚¤6M fee with Real Madrid.
He will be 29 years old in December and has represented his country Cameroon 60 times scoring 6 goals – and made his debut for them in 1996 at the age of 17.
In short â€“ he would be an excellent acquisition for Newcastle United’s squad and we can only hope Sam’s persuasive powers can win the day for us.
Comments welcome – as usual.