Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa signs for Newcastle United: Allez Les Lads

FRENCH CONNECTION: Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa signed for Newcastle United yesterday, with two more French players due on Tyneside today

FRENCH CONNECTION: Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa signed for Newcastle United yesterday, with two more French players due on Tyneside today

First published in Sport
Last updated
The Northern Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Football/Golf Writer

NEWCASTLE UNITED’S spending in the January transfer window broke through the £10m barrier last night when they completed the signing of Montpellier defender Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa.

After successfully passing a medical at the club’s Benton training headquarters yesterday, Yanga-Mbiwa finalised the £6.7m transfer to St James’ Park, and has signed a five-and-a-half-year deal.

Newcastle’s squad strengthening will not stop there and they are also understood to have edged significantly closer to two more new signings.

Nancy have confirmed that a fee has been agreed – believed to be around £2.5m – with Newcastle for left-back Massadio Haidara and Bordeaux have indicated a willingness to do business for forward Yoan Gouffran for £1.5m.

And a fourth new face this month might not be far away either. Midfielder Moussa Sissoko, whose advisors have held talks with a number of clubs, has been left out of Toulouse’s squad for tonight’s French Cup tie with PSG ahead of his departure.

While Newcastle still have work to do on those deals, they finally landed Yanga- Mbiwa after tracking the player for more than a year.

The 23-year-old led Montpellier to the French league title last season and Newcastle tried in the summer to land him only to be put off by the asking price.

But after reported interest from Arsenal was never seriously followed up Montpellier lowered their demands and an agreement was reached earlier this week.

After spending the day on Tyneside to rubber-stamp the move, Yanga-Mbiwa is now excited about the challenge that lies ahead of him in the Premier League.

“It is an honour to be able to come to Newcastle United and have the chance to play in the Premier League,” he said.

“Newcastle are one of the biggest clubs in the league, and I’m going to try to give everything I have so that the team can do well.

“I have experienced a lot of positive things so far in my career and one of those is joining this club.”

Yanga-Mbiwa, who will wear squad number 13, will be the eighth Frenchman in the Newcastle squad when he starts to train with his new team-mates this morning.

He was born in the Central African Republic’s capital Bangui before moving over to a town near Marseille in the south of France.

The centre-back has played for Montpellier since he was 13 but it was his performances in last season’s title-winning campaign which caught the eye of Newcastle chief scout, Graham Carr.

Haidara, 20, and Gouffran, 26, are expected on Tyneside within the next 24 hours to finalise deals.

The latter has been left out of Bordeaux’s squad for the French Cup tie with Moulins tonight, and revealed on Twitter last night that he would become a Newcastle player today.

It is hoped Newcastle will have the new players in place to make their debut at Aston Villa next Tuesday, which is a game now holding huge importance with both teams in a relegation fight.

A deal for Sissoko is more complicated.

He is believed to have agreed a pre-contract agreement which would see him arrive in the summer, but Newcastle would like a deal to happen now – but not for Toulouse’s £2.5m asking price.

Comments (6)

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11:22am Wed 23 Jan 13

Suspect Package says...

Not sure why "le toon armee" news is in the Middlesbrough FC section?
Not sure why "le toon armee" news is in the Middlesbrough FC section? Suspect Package
  • Score: 0

12:45pm Wed 23 Jan 13

jabdc5, the land that's still trying to recover from the last tory government. says...

and they're after a Nancy left back too..............tho
ught they already had one...in fact a whole team of them. Don't Newcastle know the French are always the first to surrender? Hardly the types you want on your side in a battle
and they're after a Nancy left back too..............tho ught they already had one...in fact a whole team of them. Don't Newcastle know the French are always the first to surrender? Hardly the types you want on your side in a battle jabdc5, the land that's still trying to recover from the last tory government.
  • Score: 0

1:41pm Wed 23 Jan 13

Brighouseandback says...

You have to love 'em don't you.
The headline in The Chronic online a short time ago was: "Mapou Yanga - Mbiwa sets his sights on helping NUFC into the top 4...."
As deluded as ever, and long may it continue.
You have to love 'em don't you. The headline in The Chronic online a short time ago was: "Mapou Yanga - Mbiwa sets his sights on helping NUFC into the top 4...." As deluded as ever, and long may it continue. Brighouseandback
  • Score: 0

2:04pm Wed 23 Jan 13

Base007 says...

Why is the Northern Echo obsessed with the Geordies? I couldn't care less? Isn't it a Darlo newspaper? Take Darlo or Boro is just 14 miles away. The Mags? Who cares. Get relegated please.
Why is the Northern Echo obsessed with the Geordies? I couldn't care less? Isn't it a Darlo newspaper? Take Darlo or Boro is just 14 miles away. The Mags? Who cares. Get relegated please. Base007
  • Score: 0

2:06pm Wed 23 Jan 13

Base007 says...

*talk.
*talk. Base007
  • Score: 0

3:19pm Wed 23 Jan 13

behonest says...

Well I think it's great for the Region that NUFC are signing so many local Geordie lads to play for them.
Well I think it's great for the Region that NUFC are signing so many local Geordie lads to play for them. behonest
  • Score: 0

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