IN-DEMAND defender Mathieu Debuchy wants to snub Continental interest and move to Newcastle United this summer, The Journal can reveal.
Having already opened negotiations with Lille, United want to double Debuchy’s Ligue 1 wages and offer him a five-year deal to join their French revolution.
They believe the move would have already been concluded if it had not been for his sudden elevation to France’s first-choice right-back following an injury to Arsenal’s Bacary Sagna.
His fine performance in Monday’s Euro 2012 Group D opener against England proved his undoubted class – and illustrated just why United are not the only team keen to secure his services in the close season. However, senior sources have told The Journal Newcastle are not worried that their long-standing pursuit of Debuchy will be damaged by his fine performance in Donetsk.
We understand the defender has told close friend Yohan Cabaye on several occasions he wants to join him on Tyneside – a message relayed back to United’s hierarchy through Debuchy’s representatives at the end of May.
Newcastle wanted to push through a move before the European Championships but despite opening negotiations they could not agree a fee with Lille, which will be their priority as soon as France are knocked out of the tournament in Poland and Ukraine.
Although a player of promise, they are not especially anxious about news Inter Milan have joined the race for his services and believe the presence of Cabaye in their squad is a major factor in their favour.
Debuchy favours a move to England and, with neither of the Manchester clubs likely to join a bidding war for the player, Lille are ready for further negotiations with Newcastle. However, he revealed yesterday he would not decide his future until after France’s Euro 2012 campaign.
Debuchy said: “Right now, I am focused on the Euros.
“I have wishes, but we will discuss them later.”
Reports in France have claimed there is a release fee in Debuchy’s Ligue 1 contract but, had that been the case, United would have attempted to push through a swift deal as they did with Cabaye.
Instead they will wait until after the conclusion of the European Championships to resume their negotiations with the former French champions. If Debuchy (pictured right) does sign for United it further complicates Danny Simpson’s situation. The right-back has posted a string of messages on his Twitter account expressing disappointment at the way his contract negotiations are being reported.
However, The Journal understands there has been no fresh talk between the United hierarchy and his new agent David Manasseh since the end of the season.
At this point, Simpson is poised to report back for pre-season training to try and retain his place in the United side – although his contract situation has alerted Fulham and West Ham. QPR have also been linked to the £2million-rated defender.
Meanwhile, The Journal can reveal that United are unlikely to broker any deals while events in Poland and Ukraine unfold.
It is understood most of United’s senior figures are on holiday and do not expect any business to be concluded until the conclusion of Euro 2012.
United have spoken to Ajax about Holland international Vurnon Anita but Tyneside sources say they were merely “testing the water” with the Dutch giants.
Newcastle’s interest is genuine but they will not break the bank for the versatile 23-year-old and if Ajax stand firm on their £8million valuation United will look elsewhere. Anita appeals to Newcastle’s power brokers because he can play either in the defensive midfield role or at left-back.
With an increased fixture list due to their qualification for the Europa League, versatility has been made a key priority in all of their summer transfer business.
:: NEWCASTLE will face Porto and Olympiacos in Portugal as part of their pre-season preparations in the Guadiana Torneo at the Algarve Stadium near Faro.
They play Olympiacos on Friday, July 27 and Porto the next day. Both games kick-off at 8.45pm.