Newcastle target Mathieu Debuchy played 70 minutes in Lille’s pre-season friendly against Rennes last night, as he gets ready for the new season, although he still doesn’t quite know where that will be.
Mathieu Debuchy – during Euro 2012
It seems that Newcastle have not given up on their top transfer target yet, even though Lille President Michel Seydoux seemed to pull the plug on his potential move to Tyneside last Thursday, when he said he was not for sale.
The reason was that Newcastle would not offer enough money for the player (isn’t that unusual), and Lille officials are now making all the noises that he will stay at the French club, but we think some of this is for Newcastle’s benefit, so the Tyneside club will bid higher.
After the match last night, Lille manager Rudi Garcia had this to say about his right-back:
“Mathieu was good. It was important to play 70 minutes for him.” “He will have to digest the fact that the club does not want to release him and he has no choice in the matter.”
“It is important that he does well for us, for himself and for the France team.”
But this is not over yet, as Mathieu has requested a meeting with Seydoux, and he wants an explanation of why the deal has not gone through, because in the previous week the two teams had agreed a price at £6M plus add-ons, and personal terms were also agreed with the player.
Last Friday this is what Mathieu had to say about the deal that has dragged on and on this summer:
” I called the President and I left him a message, to ask him to clarify the situation for me.” “I do not understand.” ”One day they told me they cannot let me go because the club did not find my successor.”
“Another day because the offer is insufficient from Newcastle. One day it is the coach who is blocking me, and the next day it is the President.”
“I am still determined to find something else, another experience, and I would like to speak with the President to make it clear between us.”
We don’t think this is over yet, but Newcastle will need to move soon, either to wrap up the Debuchy deal or go after other alternatives.
If we were betting men we’d say that Newcastle will still get Mathieu Debuchy this summer.
There’s only just over four weeks left in the transfer window, and we have no new senior players through the door yet at St. James Park yet.
And by the way, St. James’ Park has looked a terrific stadium in hosting the Olympic Games, and to get the new Stadium built was probably Freddy Shepherd’s greatest achievement while Chairman of Newcastle United for ten years.
On the transfer front, all’s well that ends well, and if we can get three top players through the door this summer, we’ll be happy enough.
And we still think Mathieu will be one of them.
What do you think?