Rafael Benitez explains why Florian Thauvin asked to leave Newcastle this summer

Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez during the press conference

The Frenchman was happy with life in Marseille after last season's loan spell.

Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez during the press conferenceNewcastle United manager Rafael Benitez

Rafael Benitez has explained why Florian Thauvin wanted to leave Newcastle this summer, in quotes published by the Chronicle.

The 23-year old spent last term at the Stade Velodrome and fared better than he managed on Tyneside. He is clearly more comfortable plying his trade across the Channel and will now return to Marseille initially on loan, playing no part in Newcastle’s promotion push this season.

Florian Thauvin celebrates after scoring the first goal for NewcastleFlorian Thauvin celebrates after scoring for Newcastle

“We had an advantage because we know Florian is a good player, we know about his quality, but I knew what he was thinking,” said Benitez.

“He was happy at Marseille last year and we had to do it. We want the best players, but we have to be convinced and they have to be convinced it is the best for everyone. He was training well for us but he wanted to go there.”

Thauvin impressed in Ligue 1 during the 2014-15 campaign and was signed by the Magpies last summer for around £12 million, according to the Daily Mail.

Picture Supplied by Action ImagesFlorian Thauvin at Marseille

He made just 16 appearances for the club – scoring once and assisting three times – before being loaned back to his former club on transfer deadline day in January this year.

The former France Under-21 international enjoyed a decent spell back in his native land and was clearly keen to stay there this season.

Picture Supplied by Action ImagesFlorian Thauvin at Marseille

Marseille have an obligation to make the move permanent, as stated on nufc.com, and Newcastle fans won’t lose any sleep over the loss of the pacey winger.

Benitez has been active in the transfer market building a hungry squad prepared to fight in the Championship and Thauvin clearly wasn’t up to the task.

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