Newcastle United to battle Marseille for Ligue 1 midfielder
Alan Pardew is keen to begin the rebuilding process at St James’ Park early with highly-rated French midfielder Remy Cabella identified as one of the first of many transfer targets.
The Toon boss has been granted a stay of execution by club owner Mike Ashley, who looks set to back the Magpies gaffer to the tune of £60m in transfer funds, if reports are to be believed.
And Pardew has wasted no time in identifying some potential new arrivals, with the club already thought to be courting Cabella, ahead of a formal bid this summer.
However the Premier League outfit could face some stiff competition to recruit the 24-year-old, who revealed this week that the Toon are likely to go head-to-head with Ligue 1 giants and former European Cup winners Olympique Marseille in their bid to bring the player to England.
The team known simply as L’OM in their homeland have just recruited former Argentina and Athletic Bilbao boss Marcelo Bielsa as their new manager as they look to take on the newly-rich duo of Paris Saint-Germain and AS Monaco next season.
And speaking in a recent interview, Cabella remained coy on his options.
“I have an arrangement with Montpellier in case an interesting offer pops up. Newcastle is a good club in England,” he said.
Newcastle previously failed in a bid to bring the player to Tyneside, with Montpellier rebuffing their advances back in January.
But with the Ligue 1 side now safe from relegation, a summer deal could well be ironed out – the only question that remains is whether it is with Newcastle or Marseille.
Any failure to secure the acquisition of Cabella is likely to be a major blow to Pardew’s hopes of rebuild the Toon squad ahead of another tough Premier League campaign.
And with Newcastle fans growing increasingly restless at the lack of progress seen at the club, the arrival of the 24-year-old would go a long way to appeasing much of the team’s supporter base.
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