It seems as though Modibo Maiga is still open to moving to Newcastle should Alan Pardew and Co come calling again in the January transfer window.
Newcastle were interest in the Malian strike in the summer and were believed to be in negotiations with his French club Sochaux.
But with Maiga being the huffy type he wasn’t happy with how things were going so decided to go on strike with the hope of forcing the move.
In the end we didn’t sign Maiga, which put the striker in a position of awkwardness in terms of his current club. He’d already been in the press telling all and sundry that he didn’t want to be there and, as I’m sure you can imagine, he isn’t exactly the fans’ flavour of the month despite his goalscoring form. You’d think that he’d learn from that and keep his gob shut wouldn’t you?
Maiga has once again been speaking about his future, and once again he’s informed the world that he is still looking to move away from the club.
“I have had enough of being booed by supporters right now, but anyway it does not stop me scoring goals for the club and making them happy,” Maiga told skysports.com.
“I scored a double for them again at the weekend. I had two chances on Saturday against Toulouse, two goals, just to thank them.”
It certainly sounds as though he doesn’t want to be at his current club and I sense a bit of sarcasm in his comments in honesty. He needs to be careful however as there is still no guarantee of a club coming in for him in January, especially if he continues to show a petulant attitude.
If you go by weekend reports in the local press then Newcastle are still interested and are looking to reignite a move over the winter although they could, apparently, switch to other targets if they needed to. Maiga, however, remains open to a move to the North-East.
“Newcastle? They are a very good club,” said Maiga. “I will not finish my career in Sochaux if I am scoring every week – that is the reality of football. I have not invented that!”
“At the moment I am here and scoring goals. I do not know when the transfer window opens what there will be. It depends also on the club, but in the near future I want to ply my trade in another top league. It is a genuine ambition, I will accept being booed for that!”
My message to Maiga is simple really – don’t burn any bridges at your current club. With an attitude like yours it’s no wonder that the Sochaux fans are on your back.
On a personal note I’m not entirely sure that I want him at Newcastle. Obviously our scouts have seen something in him and I trust them 100%, but I do question his attitude. It seems to be rather large considering his fairly average goal return of 36 goals in 144 club games. That’s 1 goal every 4 games for the stat lovers out there.
I also question the wisdom of signing another striker who will be missing for the African Cup of Nations over the winter of 2012. Mali currently top their qualifying group and play the final game of their qualification campaign against bottom team Cape Verde at the weekend. If they win that they are through which means that we’d be without the services of Maiga and the rest of the African contingent for nigh on two months.
Also remember that the format is being changed so that the competition is hosted in “odd” years meaning that there will be another African Cup of Nations tournament just a year later. For that reason I’d prefer a European striker as at least we wouldn’t have to wave goodbye to our entire strikeforce for four months over two seasons.
Maiga seems keen still, but I’m not. Where do you sit on this matter?