NEWCASTLE UNITED are working on options at right-back, regardless of whether clubs interested in landing Mathieu Debuchy this summer match a £12m valuation.
The Magpies, who paid £5.5m for the Frenchman in January last year, are expecting offers before the start of the new Premier League season following his performances which have helped France to the quarter-finals of the World Cup.
Marseille have joined Arsenal in expressing an interest and the latter can offer him the Champions League football he craves after less than two seasons at St James’ Park. He has not expressed a wish to leave at this stage, but the uncertainty surrounding his future has grown amid suggestions across the English Channel that he could go.
Talk of a £12m offer from Arsenal makes it difficult for Marseille.
If Newcastle did show encouragement to Marseille, they possess attacking players such as Andre Ayew, Jordan Ayew and Dmitri Payet, who chief scout Graham Carr has been following for a number of years.
Arsenal remain favourites, however, as Arsene Wenger looks to replace Bacary Sagna. Newcastle are interested in the Gunners’ young right-back Carl Jenkinson.
There was talk earlier this summer of Newcastle being keen to strike a season-long loan deal for Jenkinson. If Debuchy was sold for the sort of eight-figure sums being talked about then they could look to do a permanent deal for the England Under-21 international.
Manchester City’s Micah Richards, due to move on after 11 years following the arrival of Sagna, is another under consideration but the 25-year-old would be a more expensive deal to clinch.