There appeared to be some exciting news for Newcastle United fans to wake up to on deadline day morning.
Watford had made an £18 million bid for the Lille midfielder Thiago Maia – but Le10 Sports believes that he would rather move to St James’ Park than Vicarage Road. And who wouldn’t want to play under Rafa Benitez, a manager who has turned seemingly Championship level players into proven Premier League operators?
But that does not mean Maia will be posing in the black and white stripes by the end of the day.
The Sun claims that Newcastle are indeed interested in the Brazilian starlet – but are not prepared to pay Lille’s asking price. So, once again, The Magpies’ hopes of signing a player who would genuinely improve their squad appear to have been scuppered by a lack of finances.
21-year-old Maia is one of the most promising young Brazilian midfielders around, enhancing his reputation by winning gold at the 2016 Rio Olympics alongside the likes of Neymar and Gabriel Jesus.
He moved to Lille from Santos last summer but his debut season in France didn’t exactly go to plan with Les Dogues only narrowly avoiding relegation to the second tier.