don’t despair. Yohan Cabaye’s time at St. James’ Park may soon be up.
On Sunday Newcastle raised the spirits of the Toon Army when they rejected a £14M bid from Paris Saint-Germain but today that hope was cast in doubt when Alan Pardew admitted uncertainty at holding onto Cabaye through the close of the January transfer window.
Asked if he was confident Cabaye would remain a Newcastle player after Friday’s deadline, Pardew said:
“You are talking to someone who lost Andy Carroll with eight hours to go, so am I confident? No, I’m not confident, and I don’t think any team not in a Champions League position or fighting for a Champions League position could be.”
And therein lies one of the big upsides in signing Cabaye: He’s not cup-tied. For any club with dreams of European glory that’s a massive boost. Paris Saint-Germain certainly qualify as one of those clubs.
PSG were handed a favorable draw in the Champions League Round of 16 where they will face off against Bundesliga side Bayer Leverkusen. Les Parisiens have more than enough fire-power to dispose of Leverkusen but if they are to go the distance in the Champions League – while also keeping their domestic title in tact – a proven, veteran talent like Cabaye could be the difference maker.
Of course, Newcastle are desperate to keep their talisman but everyone has their price. And for Mike Ashley’s club, it’s £20M. Anything less than that and Newcastle simply won’t listen. Or so they say.
Cabaye has long been the subject of transfer rumors and tried desperately to manufacture his own move out of the North-East last summer with Arsenal his desired destination. The Gunners had little interest in another center-midfielder regardless of Cabaye’s talent and the fact he’s French. At that time, a bid in the range of £10M was made but never formally rejected.
Credit to Cabaye, the episode didn’t turn his head. He knuckled down right away for Newcastle, piecing together a brilliant first half of the season scoring seven goals and adding two assists. His displays have not gone unnoticed and now it’s PSG who look poised to splash the cash.
“We know we have got a club interested in Cabaye, a very wealthy club and a powerful club, and we are conscious of that,” Pardew said. “We are doing our best to protect Newcastle.”
Unfortunately for the Magpies, “protect[ing] Newcastle” sometimes means making deals you don’t want to make when Mr. Moneybags strolls into town.