Remy Cabella’s protracted move to Newcastle has hit a snag after a £7m fee the Magpies thought they’d agreed in principle was revised upwards by Montpellier.
From £7m to £12m is quite a rise and one that Mike Ashley’s transfer moguls will surely try to erode, but they should not be cowed in their mission to land a player of real quality.
Newcastle are 8/5 for a top-ten Premier League finish in 2014/15, a price that looks more than reasonable given they landed the odds last term despite a woeful 2014.
If they can land Cabella, that rating for an above the equator campaign culmination could begin to look farcically generous, as the numbers below illustrate.
Sign up at biwn.com today for a £30 free bet that would cop to the beat of £48 if the Magpies echo or better their 2012/13 ranking.
The Montpellier maestro contributed 14 goals and five assists in 36 Ligue 1 starts for La Paillade last term.
Only Mathieu Valbuena and Monaco’s €45-million man James (pronounced Ha-Mez) Rodriguez managed to provide more than the 81 goalscoring opportunities crafted by Cabella for teammates.
His creative endeavours didn’t end there either, with a handsome 51 accurate crosses served up to boot.
Not content with being a highly-effective number 10 who has excelled at all points across the midfield compass this term, the object of Newcastle’s ardour also relishes getting stuck in.
His average of two tackles per game in Ligue 1 means only two Magpies dispossessed a greater amount of foes last term and characterises him alongside Chelsea’s Oscar as a new breed of sleeves-rolled-up number tens.
All this while playing for a struggling Montpellier side that slipped the relegation noose by just two points.
Cabella’s direct contribution of 19 goals meant he either created or scored a gargantuan 42 per cent of his side’s league goals in 2013/14.