This summer was full of long-winded and protracted transfer dealings, with Luka Modric, Robin Van Persie and Emmanuel Adebayor the main culprits but the difference between them and the player Newcastle United chased throughout the summer is they all got their move, while he did not.
Mathieu Debuchy, a former midfielder converted into a full-back, had an impressive season last year with French side Lille as well as making an impact as part of the France team at this summer’s European Championships in Ukraine and Poland.
The right-back position is an area where Alan Pardew considered his squad to be weak and the opportunity to bring in an international standard player in that position was too big to turn down. Newcastle also have a successful recent record at bringing in Francophone players including Debuchy’s international team-mates Hatem Ben Arfa and Yohann Cabaye.
Debuchy is a talented individual, of that there is no question, but his performances so far this campaign have left little to be desired.
Is he playing himself out of a move?
The 27-year-old was adamant he wanted the switch to St James Park during the last transfer window yet the two clubs could not agree a fee, and he has recently intimated that nothing has changed on his part and a move to Newcastle would be his ideal scenario come January.
Yet based on his current form Newcastle may want to consider their other options. Last night was the culmination of some rather mediocre form for the one-club-man as he saw red for a petulant double booking in Lille’s drab defeat at the hands of Valencia.
Despite a good display against Saint Etienne on the opening day of the season he has struggled since, playing in defeats to Rennes and BATE Borisov and two draws against Lyon and Troyes respectively.
It appears the interest from Real Madrid has dried up for his services and as much as he wants the move it is hard to see Newcastle paying over the £6 million being quoted as their top-end estimate for an out of form player, especially with Danny Simpson, James Perch and now Vurnon Anita all currently at Pardew’s disposal.
His poor form may be a direct consequence of his displeasure at being told he must remain in the North of France, especially after an astonishing 19 years of service to Les Dogues. Yet such indifferent displays will not enamour him to The Magpies hierarchy come January, however much he still desires a Tyneside switch.
The international fixtures around the corner may be one of his last opportunities to prove his worth to potential suitors, or else he may just have to settle at the club he has been at since the age of eight.
What do you think? Should Newcastle pursue him despite his indifferent form? Or do they already have enough right-back cover?
image: © Julien Haler