Newcastle have secured their third signing in as many days as Massadio Haidara joins from Ligue 1 club Nancy.
The 20-year-old has put pen to paper on a five-and-a-half-year deal at St James’ Park and becomes United’s fourth signing of the January transfer window following the recent additions of Mathieu Debuchy, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa and Yoan Gouffran.
The fee, although officially undisclosed, is believed to be in the region of £3 million although Haidara is expected to be used as cover for Davide Santon first and foremost with an eye on him developing for the future. Not exactly a “development squad” player as such, more of a backup player who can step in. Hopefully anyway…
Haidara has represented France at under-19, under-20 and under-21 level and has already notched up over 50 competitive appearances in club football which isn’t bad for a 20-year-old. He will wear the number 19 shirt recently vacated by Demba Ba.
Speaking to the club website, Haidara admitted it was the desire of United to sign the youngster which helped sway the decision.
“It was the desire of the club to sign me up which was the most important factor. It was nothing to do with the league position,” Massadio revealed.
“It was really all about the club’s desire and willingness to sign me up. Also, I like the club’s ambition to strengthen the whole team so we can improve our league position. That’s what appealed to me so I didn’t hesitate,” he added.
Meanwhile, as has become customary, Alan Pardew also had his say on the signing.
“Massadio is very highly-thought of in France and he’s somebody who our scouting team have been greatly impressed by,” said Pardew.
He added: “At the age of 20, he will only continue to get better but he’s already played a lot of games in his country’s top division and represented France at under-19, under-20 and under-21 level. He’s strong and quick and we’re looking forward to seeing him develop here.”
Meanwhile, in other transfer news, it seems as though Moussa Sissoko is on his way to Newcastle after his current club revealed on their website that a deal had been agreed for this transfer window and not in the summer as had been suggested by some.
He is apparently on his way to Newcastle as we speak and a deal is expected to be announced tomorrow with a fee being mentioned of £1.8 million which isn’t too bad for a player who as recently as one year ago was being touted around at values upwards of £15 million.
Meanwhile, on Twitter, one of those French gadgies that has called most things right this window has revealed that the president of Bastia has received a €3 million offer from Newcastle for their attacking midfielder Florian Thauvin which he is considering.
With all these signings it’s becoming like a French football advent calender!