French newspaper L’Equipe is reporting that Newcastle went close to signing two left backs in the final week of the summer transfer window.
One we knew about was for 19-year-old PSG left-back Stanley N’Soki, and we had a €10M bid accepted by PSG for him.
But he thought he was too young to move to the Premier League and decided to stay in Paris.
20-year-old Lille left-back Hamza Mendyl
That’s a pity because the lad looks like an excellent young player who could have challenged Paul Dummett immediately for the left-back starting position.
And we are also reported to have agreed a deal for Lille left-back Hamza Mendyl in the week before the transfer window closed, but it fell through due to work permit issues.
But the 13 times capped 20-year-old Moroccan International signed for Schalke last Friday, so he’s no longer available to Newcastle.
Mendyl was included in the Moroccan World Cup squad, but we still couldn’t get a work permit for him.
So these are two young players Rafa went after and of course he needed just one of them brought in.
We knew about Stanley N’Soki, but nothing was reported at the time on Hamza Mendyl.
Mendyl was reported yesterday to have almost joined Arsenal – but they couldn’t get a work permit for him either.
So we’re not sure about Mendyl being so close to joining Newcastle – but it could be true.
Update – he has told Kicker in Germany that he was negotiating with both Arsenal and Newcastle in the summer – so it seems accurate enough.
We expect Rafa to try to bring in another young left-back in January, so we at least have cover for Paul Dummett in the second half of the season.
What do you think?