With Newcastle United on the verge of a takeover, the Magpies have been linked with several high-profile players and coaches amid the prospect of St James’ Park having a huge budget going forward.
ESPN have claimed that current Borussia Dortmund head coach Lucien Favre is part of a four-man shortlist put together by the prospective new Newcastle United, along with Mauricio Pochettino, Massimiliano Allegri and Rafael Benitez.
Favre began his managerial career in his native Switzerland, where he plied his trade between 1991 and 2007, before leaving the country for Hertha Berlin, managing the German capital outfit for two years.
The 62-year-old then enjoyed a superb spell at Borussia Monchengladbach, winning 87 of his 188 games in charge, then spent two years at French outfit Nice before returning to Germany and taking the Dortmund reins, where he has been excelling.
While at Nice, Favre got the best out of Mario Balotelli, who scored an impressive 43 times in 66 matches under the Swiss coach, and as such he had plenty of kind words for the current BVB boss.
“He made me much better, especially tactically. Before, I worked on instinct,” Balotelli is quoted by BeIN Sports as saying. “I discovered a great coach. He is very good tactically, but also in the way he manages the locker room.”
Balotelli is a wonderful player who has often divided opinion amongst coaches – Manchester City ace Sergio Aguero previously deemed the Italian’s relationship with Roberto Mancini as “like father and son” but who would “kick lumps out of each other”.
However, Favre and Balotelli worked superbly together, the player in the form of his life under the coach and giving him plenty of praise, testament to his quality and something which would make him a great choice for the Newcastle dugout.
Balotelli is not the only player to have sung Favre’s praises – Marco Reus told the Bundesliga website in 2018: “I’ve had quite a few club coaches and among them, [Favre] is probably the best I’ve ever had.”
And he worked with Jurgen Klopp.