Newcastle United are set to launch a £10.2m bid for Lille’s exciting prospect Florian Thauvin – as Yohan Cabaye is set for a St James’ Park return today.
French sources told The Journal United lodged an enquiry about Thauvin yesterday as they look to make a breakthrough in a summer that has frustrated and disappointed in equal measure.
Thauvin is a long-term target for Newcastle, who made three attempts to buy the 20-year-old midfielder in January. Now they are back in for the France international and hope to beat Marseille, Arsenal and Chelsea to land one of France’s top prospects.
Lille are understood to be demanding closer to £13million for the winger, but in a move that has echoes of Cabaye’s stance at Newcastle, Thauvin has decided to stay away from training to try to force a move through. United have three days left to try and negotiate a deal for Thauvin, who is understood to fancy a move to Marseille.
Meanwhile, United are set to include Cabaye and Loic Remy on the bench for the crucial visit of Fulham – as the club moves to open a way back into the fray for the unsettled midfield star.
The Journal understands that Alan Pardew has been successful in his attempts to encourage Cabaye to play again for United, with the midfielder set to be named among the substitutes today alongside loan signing Remy.
Arsenal’s initial offer of around £10million has not been followed up and Cabaye, who re-joined first team training this week, is understood to have heeded appeals from Pardew and national team manager Didier Deschamps to make himself available to play. But Joe Kinnear’s planned appearance at the game is in doubt after the club’s director of football returned to London in an attempt to kick-start Newcastle’s recruitment drive.
Kinnear has been in Newcastle all week and was expected to watch the game against the Cottagers, but will now be absent as United look for their first win of the season. For Pardew, re-integrating Cabaye will be a major boost in a week when his team avoided defeat against Morecambe to give them the first sniff of momentum since the season began.
The manager is considering the merits of retaining Sammy Ameobi and brother Shola – match-winners at Morecambe – and says he is hopeful the club can “kick on” now.
“The win gives you a good feeling. I bumped into Colo the morning after the game - he watched it on the box and there was a bit of praise for how we stood up to an awful battering and those little things.
“Maybe we can kick on now – there is that feeling.”
Pardew may also be without Tim Krul, but after more heroics from Rob Elliot during the week he feels that Newcastle will be in safe hands even if he misses out. The United manager confirmed: “Tim has got a slight problem with his groin. We’re monitoring him for Saturday.”
The former Charlton man is ready to step in for the Holland keeper if he does not make it and Pardew has praised the way he has recovered from a nervy start to his Newcastle career.
He said: “Obviously when Rob was at Charlton we got him under the radar for £500,000 which is nothing really for a Premier League player.
“He looked a bit nervous that night at Nottingham Forest, but we had such faith in him and he’s repaid that faith.
“He’s not just pushing Tim but he’s a Premier League goalie by anyone’s game. That was a real good bit of business on our part. He’s very comfortable on the ball too and it’s only when the group really accept you that you can be like that.”