YOHAN CABAYE has claimed Newcastle United agreed to a “deal” that would enable him to leave this month when they rejected a £10m offer from Arsenal last summer.
Cabaye was formally presented to the media as a Paris St Germain player tonight after signing a three-and-a-half year contract to complete a £20m switch to the French capital.
The 28-year-old was the subject of a previous offer from Arsenal in August, and while Newcastle rejected the Gunners' approach, Cabaye has claimed there was an agreement that he would be allowed to leave in the current transfer window.
The Frenchman's comments are completely at odds with remarks made by Joe Kinnear this month, with the director of football insisting no one would be leaving St James' Park.
“I am very happy and proud to participate in this huge project (at PSG),” said Cabaye. “I cannot wait to start with my new team. I thank everyone – the leaders of PSG, my agents and Newcastle.
“I spent two-and-a-half wonderful years that allowed me to discover the Premier League. I do not forget that. But we had a deal last summer after an offer was rejected from Arsenal. They followed that by letting me go this winter.”
Cabaye has joined a Paris St Germain side three points clear of Monaco at the top of Ligue 1 and preparing for a Champions League last-16 tie with Bayer Leverkusen, and having won a French league and cup double with Lille, the midfielder claims the prospect of winning more silverware was a major factor in his decision to leave Tyneside.
“PSG is a club that cannot be refused,” he said. “I want to win titles, and PSG gives me this perspective. I did not have any hesitation and accepted the offer immediately.
“Is there a risk in moving so close to the World Cup? Yes. But I also took a risk when I left Lille to join Newcastle in the year before the Euros. I did not ask questions, even though we are six months away from the World Cup.
“I believe this is my destiny. I have confidence in my abilities, even if I will have to adapt to my team-mates and playing in a big team.”