Yohan Cabaye was on the fringes of the French National team when he joined Newcastle in June of 2011 for €5M, which at the time was around £4M, and Newcastle paid the release clause fee in his Lille contract to get him on Tyneside.
Yohan Cabaye – fantastic acquisition by Newcastle
In August of 2010, while still at Lille, Cabaye was called up to the senior French squad team for the very first time by new manager Laurent Blanc, for the team’s friendly match against Norway, after the French had been abysmal at the World Cup in South Africa the previous summer.
And the midfielder made his senior international debut in that match, appearing as a substitute for Yann M’Vila, and then in February 2011, Cabaye earned his second French cap in the team’s 1–0 victory over Brazil.
So when he arrived on Tyneside, he was not a regular in the French team, but fast forward about 22 months and Yohan Cabaye is now one of France’s best players, and also one of the best central midfielders in the English Premier League, and we know some big clubs will be bidding over £20M for him this summer.
Yohan’s not been a bad buy for the Magpies at around £4M, and he is also likely to become the Newcastle captain this summer, if and when Fabricio Coloccini returns to Argentina to be with his family.
Yohan has played 63 times for Newcastle with 11 goals and 10 assists, and he was instrumental in persuading Mathieu Debuchy, Moussa Sissoko and Yoan Gouffran to join the club in January.
Yohan’s huge success on Tyneside will only encourage other French players to want to join Newcastle, to improve their game and become a regular in the French National side.
Yohan was one of France’s best players in last summer’s European Championships and he has played another 18 times for France since arriving on Tyneside.
So Yohan has been a huge success story at Newcastle, and if we were to pick a player who could emulate Yohan over the next two years, it has to be 23 year-old Moussa Sissoko who looks a world-class player in the making.
We wanted to point out what a tremendous acquisition Yohan has been for Newcastle, and we may already have others on board at the club who can emulate the 27 year-old Frenchman in the next year or so.
And it wouldn’t be fair if we didn’t mention the person who has been instrumental in finding these class players – Chief Scout Graham Carr – who is gaining rock star status on Tyneside, because he’s so good at his job.
Things are looking up at Newcastle these days – fact.
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