Newcastle United in three-way battle to sign Southampton defender Yan Valery
According to Foot Mercato, Newcastle United are in a three-way battle with Olympique de Marseille and Borussia Monchengladbach to sign Southampton defender Yan Valery this summer.
Valery is refusing to rule out a permanent move away from St. Mary’s at the end of the season and is open to a return to France, as he remains intent on one day forging a career in Ligue 1 after leaving to join the Saints aged 16.
The sporting project is vital to his decision on where to play next season, having fallen out of favour on the south coast this season and struggled to establish himself at Birmingham City after joining the Championship side on loan in January.
Marseille are said to have failed in an attempt to secure Valery’s services during the winter market but have kept a keen eye on the 22-year-old’s situation, as President Pablo Longoria strives to land a bargain in the event of selling Hiroki Sakai.
Valery is thought to boast all the traits needed to perform in France in being a fast, technical and defensively sharp young full-back with strong potential, which has also sparked interest from Newcastle and Borussia Monchengladbach who likewise follow his situation closely.
Newcastle currently have two out-and-out right-backs on their books in Emil Krafth and Javier Manquillo, while Jacob Murphy has featured in the role for the Toon’s last seven Premier League games following Steve Bruce’s return to a five-man defence.
United’s need for a fourth full-back option seems questionable given the performances Murphy has delivered in recent weeks, with the natural attacker impressive defensively against Tottenham, Burnley, West Ham, Liverpool and Manchester City.
He has also displayed his offensive threat across those matches plus previous meetings with Aston Villa and Wolverhampton Wanderers earlier in the year, while Valery has failed to cut out a role for himself at Birmingham or Southampton this season.
Valery had featured on just four occasions, starting twice, for the Saints before moving to St. Andrews’ on a temporary deal, where the former France U18 international started two of his seven appearances but was not included in a matchday squad from the start of March.
That includes all matches overseen by Lee Bowyer after replacing Aitor Karanka, who lauded Valery when he announced his arrival and claimed via quotes by Birmingham Live: “He is desperate to help us and he knows he is going to help us a lot because he is a very good player.”
Things did not turn out that way for Valery at Birmingham and it remains to be seen what sort of future will be in store for the Frenchman back at Southampton, as a move to Newcastle, Marseille or Borussia Monchengladbach would surely only be to offer depth.
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