Newcastle signed Florian Thauvin for around £13M in the summer of last year from Marseille and it was a disastrous signing by Chief Scout Graham Carr.
It came one year after another French player of similar build and similar playing style – Remy Cabella – had failed miserably in his first season on Tyneside.
So why we paid out big money for Thauvin is a good question, but it didn’t turn out very well and Florian lasted only six months on Tyneside before he moved back to Marseille on loan last January.
Florian Thauvin in action for Marseille
Newcastle at the time were in a desperate relegation battle under the woeful Steve McClaren, who was out of his depth.
To his credit Florian came back under difficult circumstances in pre-season last summer and showed some maturity when Rafa Benitez was in charge and he acted professionally at Newcastle, trained hard and played in some of the pre-season games.
But it became clear the 23 year-old still didn’t want to stay on Tyneside and so another loan move was arranged back to Marseille for the season.
It was very similar to the loan move set up for Remy Cabella last season and it came with an obligation to buy for Marseille.
That means after Thauvin plays a certain number of games – it was 12 for Remy Cabella – then Marseilles must buy him for the stated fee in the contract – thought to be close to £10M.
With Florian now doing well at Marseilles and having appeared 9 times for the French club with 3 goals and one assist this season, the permanent transfer will almost definitely take place in January.
That will bring more money into the coffers at Newcastle, which are already pretty full after we made a handsome profit of £31M in last summer’s transfer window.
If Thauvin’s contract is similar to Remy Cabella’s then after another three appearances the automatic transfer back to Marseille will be triggered.
What do you think?