The fourth player brough in by Steve McClaren this season was Florian Thauvin, although we were surprised that Remy Cabella was sent the other way on a season long loan deal with Marseille, and they have the option to buy the player for around £7M.
Apparently the decision on Cabella had already been made before Steve arrived at Newcastle in early June.
Florian Thauvin when he arrived at Newcastle
Steve McClaren seems to be a good and thorough coach, and in the last two league games he had every single player giving 100% and the team looked organized against Manchester United and Arsenal.
We really should have got more than a solitary point out of those two games – but we didn’t.
Florian has already made three appearances for Newcastle and he has one goal and three assists that he picked up in the League Cup against Northampton Town.
So he’s made a decent start to his Newcastle career, and he looks a good player who has a lot of skill, and is good from dead ball situations.
Steve McClaren has been talking about his new player, and he was asked if Florian knew he would have to track back on defense:
“That was one of the first things I did say to him.” “It’s not just about playing with the ball, you have to do your job.”
“But he’s played under Marcelo Bielsa who is a demanding coach.” “He demands all of his players defend and work hard off the ball.”
“So he is used to that.” “It’s up to him now – but we certainly believe he’s got the potential.” “He has a great left foot and he is creative too.”
“But he’s still very young and playing for the French U-21s.” “He’s come here and he has a determined attitude to really do well.”
“We will play him in his best position, get him delivering crosses and assists and scoring goals.”
“We are all having to learn a little bit of French, just to communicate but certainly with the French players we have here I can say every player is working well here with a good attitude.
“It’s coming together well and helping Florian and all of the new players bedding in well.”
Thauvin could be on his way to being a really big player for the side, and he seems to be physical enough that he should be able to settle down fairly quickly.
One of the areas Newcastle have been weak in – as well as in defense – is in set plays – and that’s one area we are hoping Florian can help make huge improvements in.
And the young Frenchman seems to be a hard worker and stays behind after the training sessions to practice on his free kicks and corners – it seems like he’s a perfectionist.
That’s a good sign – practice makes perfect.
Our next game at West Ham is an important one, and Newcastle will have to start picking up some wins, and to win we have to score some goals.
We haven’t scored in a league game since the first game against Southampton.
Florian will be a very important player for us this season, and we hope he can set up the chances with his crosses, corners and free kicks and score some goals too.
Doing all that at Upton Park a week on Monday would be (very) good.