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Newcastle may already have a Sissoko replacement on stand-by

| 19.01.2015

Newcastle United may have already identified a replacement for star midfielder Moussa Sissoko, in the event that the Frenchman decides to leave St James’ Park in the January transfer window.

Speculation is mounting that Sissoko could be set for a move away from the north east with Arsenal thought to be heading up the queue to sign the 25-year-old who was quoted as claiming that the Gunners were the “club of my heart” during an interview with Telefoot last week.

“If Arsene Wenger calls, I’ll have a man-to-man ­discussion with him and then we’ll see. Arsenal has always been the club of my heart,” he told the French broadcaster.

Newcastle could hold out for a fee of up to £20m for the former Toulouse attacker, who arrived at the club for just £1.7m back in January 2013 and has so far scored eight goals in 78 appearances for the Toon.

The Magpies may have already identified a potential replacement from Ligue 1 too, with The Chronicle reporting that Newcastle have been scouting Nantes’ midfielder Jordan Veretout with a view to potentially signing the player.

A product of Les Canaris youth system, Vertout has played 78 games for the French club’s first team, scoring eight goals and providing a further 14 assists.

Capped by France at four different levels of youth football, the 21-year-old is capable of playing in either a defensive or more attack-minded central midfield role, where his keen eye for a pass has proven highly effective for Nantes so far this term.

Valued at around £6m by Transfermarkt, the player would nevertheless represent a bargain for the Toon as they prepare for the potential departure of Sissoko.

Arsenal are 7/2 to sign the Frenchman this January, while PSG are also in the mix to sign the France international this month at 6/4 with Ladbrokes.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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Jack Beresford

Jack Beresford is a content writer with over five years of experience in writing about sport and betting, including a two-year spell with Axonn Media. Contributes articles to HereIsTheCity and Lad Bible, while previous credits include Bwin, FTB Pro, Bleacher Report and the QBE rugby. Avid follower of tennis, rugby union, motorsport and football, Jack also writes about poker for Cardspiel.com alongside Guardian journalist Dominic Wells.