Back in January 2016, Graham Carr and Newcastle United thought they’d picked up another Ligue 1 gem when Senegalese international Henri Saivet arrived at St James’ Park.
Over five years later, he’s not only gone on to be one of the worst signings the club have made in the past two decades – costing the club just shy of £13m for a grand total of EIGHT first-team appearances in that time.
In a way, it’s the club’s fault for signing up to a long-term deal on a reported weekly wage packet of £32,000 – earning him £1.5m per season – however it’s fair to say he mustn’t have impressed the likes of McClaren, Benitez or Bruce in that time.
Thankfully for all parties, he’s set to be released this summer, with his contract set to expire later this month.
It shows how bad he’s been when that’s the only way we’ve been able to get rid of him over the past four years, having seen several loan clubs take him for a season then immediately send him back to rot in our reserves.
It says a lot about his time on Tyneside that he’s played more games in the Premier League 2 for our U23s – potentially impacting the progress of a talented local lad – than he has in the actual Premier League, with him featuring just FIVE times in five years in the top flight.
We wish him all the best for his next move – wherever that may be – but it’s fair to say there will be a sight of relief around St James’ Park when the imminent retained list features his name at the top of departures.