Cheick Tiote confirms Arsenal transfer talks as he pushes for Newcastle exit
According to Metro, Newcastle United midfielder Cheik Tiote has dropped a huge come-and-get-me hint to Arsenal as the possibility of a potential exit from Newcastle looms large.
The Ivorian International revealed that “it was true” that Arsenal indicated interest in signing him over the summer, as well as a Russian club. He, however, said that he would prefer to stay “in England” – a statement which is curiously open-ended as it is nowhere near a confirmation of loyalty to Newcastle.
Tiote has been a trusted machinery of Alan Pardew’s during the tides and turbulence at Tyneside, with various calls from support groups for the manager to be axed. Newcastle owner, Mike Ashley, has continued to provide support for the embattled Pardew even admitting the crisis had been due to negligence on his own part in providing enough transfer funds to beef up the team. However, there is a growing sense of pessimism in and around St. James’ Park that things will never quite get sweet again under Pardew, with players now likely to cower under the frustration and probably seek a new lease of life elsewhere.
Tiote is very much a fixed vertebrae in the spine of Alan Pardew’s Newcastle due to his consistent performances as a destroyer. Such performances have seen him handed the captaincy in the absence of Fabricio Coloccini, which goes to show just how reliant the Toon Army have been on him. His impressive skills in breaking up play and providing a fear factor to advancing opponents are surely enviable qualities to have in a player – little wonder he was of major interest to Arsene Wenger.
With Arsenal in desperate need of a midfield enforcer, Tiote comes in as a very handy option as he possesses the experience of the Premier League as he would not need time to adapt to the dynamics of the pace and strength of the League. The lure of playing in the Champions League must appeal to him also. The price will also not be as hefty as may be required for the likes of Bender or Carvalho and so affords us the leisure of getting a good player for a good bargain.
While we wait for Carvalho to reject Sporting’s new mega deal, a January swoop for Tiote at the right price doesn’t appear to me as one to meet rejection. We may also do well not to submit a bid a night before a Newcastle game to avoid the situation with Yohan Cabaye before the summer.
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