Marseille sign Arsenal and Newcastle United target in £12.5m deal

Attack-minded midfielder joins OM from Lille, ending speculation that Chelsea, Newcastle United and Arsenal were tempted with bids.

Supremely-talented French youngster Florian Thauvin has swapped Lille for Olympique Marseille in a £12.5m transfer, according to Express.

Left-sided forward Thauvin had attracted interest from Arsenal and Chelsea over the past year largely thanks to his startling performances in the Under-20 World Cup and prior appearances for Bastia, whom he featured for on loan from Lille.

His position at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy outfit, though, had effectively become untenable as, throughout August, there were reports indicating that Thauvin was ready to miss training sessions in order to force through a move to his dream club; Marseille.

Newcastle United were alerted to his availability on the market, though, and made an official enquiry over the weekend but appeared perturbed by the £12.5m asking price, a valuation that Marseille were all too eager to meet.

Lille, while losing a player with tremendous potential, may be pleased to have offloaded an athlete with whom they struggled to manage due to the apparently questionable team around him.

Lille president Michel Seydoux told ESPN recently that: 'His advisers are not the best in the world. It's troubling for him. He's hurting himself. The question that needs asking is why the advice he's getting is so bad.'

image: © Julien Haler

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