Newcastle United have seen their bid for Marseille’s Boubacar Kamara rejected. Having joined Wolverhampton Wanderers in the race for the French U21, they have seen their offer reportedly turned down by both the club and the player.
With only one more year on his contract, the defensive-midfielder, capable of covering at centre-half, had two suitors for his services. RMC Sport’s Loïc Tanzi claimed that both sides had put in a €2.5 million loan fee, to later be followed by a €15 million transfer sum.
Boubacar Kamara Not Leaving Marseille
Magpies Shot Down
Newcastle United are crying out for a player in the mould of Boubacar Kamara. A characteristically lacklustre start to the season, coupled with a League Cup exit at the hands of Burnley, has many Geordies itching for change.
Steve Bruce was never the most popular, but for a manager that plays unattractive football with an emphasis on defensive sustainability, Newcastle’s leakiness at the back is grating to their followers.
Mike Ashley has never had a spendthrift reputation, but even if he is still waiting on Saudi acquisition, he should be aware of the need to act. They have started poorly against teams that finished around them in the league, and look to have regressed. Without further strengthening, they could be at serious danger of relegation, with all the disastrous financial implications.
Failure to secure Kamara represents abject negotiations that were left too late by the team under Ashley. They also denote what the footballing world currently makes of affairs in the North East. Newcastle are perceived to be a club without purpose or ambition, meandering season after season with depressing regularity, but with the very real danger of falling into a relegation dog-fight.
Wolves Still Chasing
Under new manager Bruno Lage, Wolves need defensive assurance and solidity. They have lost all three Premier League fixtures 1-0, and whilst there’s no shame in losing to Leicester, Tottenham, and Manchester United, a capable deep-lying midfield presence may have made the difference.
They tried to poach teammate Ćaleta-Car earlier, but were rebuffed by his familial desires to stay in the South of France rather than move to the English Midlands. After their attempted attainment of Renato Sanches from Lille fell through, they set their sights further south and landed on Kamara.
With Newcastle out of the hunt, Wolves may feel more assured in their bid. They cannot be paired off against their footballing compatriots in an auction-like bid to extract a higher fee. The ball is very much with the men in Marseille.
Postcard From Côte d’Azur
The deal looks destined for more negotiations. Despite only a year remaining on his contract, keeping him on has its advantages. He is still a first-team player, and a seven-figure sum at this stage isn’t much help for les phocéens.
If Kamara were to go, Marseille would be keen on bringing in Amine Harit from Schalke. The Morocco international was raised in the French footballing system, so adapting to life in Ligue 1 should not be an issue for this potential late switch.
But with the dire state of French footballing finances outside of Paris, the club would need the funds now in order to proceed. They could try and play both Premier League clubs against each other, hoping for a precipitous, auction-like rise in money on offer.
Staying with Marseille would guarantee European football, with some especially noteworthy trips to Lazio, Galatasaray and Lokomotiv Moscow in the diary. Despite the allure of the Premier League, it is unknown if the riches on the other side of la manche override European participation.
Hamza Choudhury to Newcastle?
Boubacar Kamara was not the only addition Newcastle United were looking to make. They are also looking to strengthen by bringing in Hamza Choudhury from Leicester City. Despite the squad requirements inherent with European football, it appears that he has not been able to cement a position with the Foxes that he feels merits his talents.
The FA Cup winner would provide a degree of flair and creativity thus far missing from the Magpies. Much has been made of the lacklustre finishing of Allan Saint-Maximan, but he has inevitably struggled through a lack of chances beset by a missing inventive element behind.