The Times is reporting today that Newcastle want to sign Marseilles midfielder Mario Lemina, who is a 21 year-old midfielder and would appear to be a decent buy for Newcastle, since this lad is talented and has huge potential and would only improve at Newcastle.
We have been linked for weeks for his team-mate Florian Thauvin, but Newcastle have at least one offer turned down by his clubs and form comments the Frenchman has made it doesn’t appear he is all that interested in joining Newcastle – but it’s difficult to really tell.
Mario Lemina – in training at Marseilles
One report that was out earlier this month in L’Equipe was that Newcastle had bid £15M for both French players, but Marseilles turned down the offer.
So if we cannot get Thauvin and Lemina together it makes sense for Newcastle to see how much the 21 year-old would cost – and there was a report last month Newcastle had a £3M offer turned down for Mario.
Lemina is a right-footed central midfielder who turns 22 in September – and he plays in defensive midfield – so perhaps he could be the player brought in to replace Cheick Tiote, should Cheick be sold this summer.
And the fact that Cheick is not injured but was not on the plane to the US yesterday, suggests he may be on his way out of Newcastle this summer.
However there are reports tonight that Tiote had visa problems in gaining entry to the US, because he was given 180 hours community service and a seven-month sentence, suspended for two years, back in October 2013 – that’s according to manager Steve McClaren.
Lemina was born in Gabon and has been at Marseilles for only two years since signing on from Lorient, and he has so far played 46 times for Marseilles with two goals.
He has played for both the French U20 and U21 sides and he was called up by Gabon to participate in the 2015 African Cup of Nations, but he refused to play for them and still has ambitions to play for the full French side.
Before he joined Marseilles when he was at 19, he had played 18 times for Lorient.
He still has three years left on his contract at the south of France club, and the 6 ft tall midfielder would cost something above £3M.