Report: Newcastle United scouting Djibril Sidibe and Samuel Umtiti ahead of January window

Newcastle United are casting their eyes over two Ligue 1 players.

Newcastle have started preparing for the January transfer window, and a report in the Chronicle states that the Magpies have started scouting two French players ahead of making potential approaches for them.

Samuel Umtiti of Lyon is one target, who has been watched recent weeks as Steve McClaren looks to improve his defensive ranks after a poor start to the season.

Umtiti, 21, is able to play in centre-defence, but he is naturally a left-back, and is considered one of the best in Ligue 1. The French youth international has already played 148 games for Lyon since progressing through their youth academy, and possess a strong attacking threat, whilst still being defensively solid.

Left-back has been a problem position for Newcastle this term, and McClaren would be wise to sign a left-sided defender in January, with Umtiti a priority target.

As well as Umtiti, Newcastle have also been watching Lille full-back Djibril Sidibe, who has played every minute of LOSC’s league campaign this season.

Able to play on both the left and right side, McClaren is casting his eye over Sidibe, 23, as a potential replacement for Daryl Janmaat, with the report stating that interest is growing in the Dutchman ahead of January.

If Janmaat leaves, Newcastle will need to bring in both a new right-back and left-back, and Umtiti and Sidibe look to be the two players McClaren and his coaching staff are most keen on.

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