Sometimes families go out and buy a car that currently suits their needs, or at least they think it does. A year later, and their needs, be it physical performance of the car, the size of its cargo and cabin space, or the attractiveness of it, are shadowed by something newer. Something better, bigger, better performing catches the owner's eye, and they decide to trade in their current car for the new shiny.
It appears Newcastle did just that today. The Magpies made Florian Thauvin their 4th signing this transfer window under new coach Steve McClaren today. He completed his transfer from Marseilles for somewhere in the range of £12m (Guardian)-13m (Sky Sports) depending on who you read. Part of the deal was sending current Newcastle winger Rémy Cabella and his endless stream of selfies to Marseilles on a season-long loan. Marseilles has the option to buy, but the criteria are not publicly available.
Thauvin, a 22 year old winger, stands at 5'10" and has featured for the France U21 10 times, scoring 6 times. Olympique Marseilles saw him play 81 times, scoring 15 goals and providing 13 helpers. His decision to leave comes after manager Marcelo Bielsa left after the first match of the 2015-16 Ligue 1 campaign.
Cabella, currently in year two of a 6 year deal, did not feature in Newcastle's preseason due to a muscle tear in his thigh. He was reportedly sighted in training at Marseilles yesterday, and the news was made official today. The 5'8" winger made 34 appearances for Newcastle, scoring a single goal and assisting two more.
I seriously question this buy at this point in time. Even with the desperately needed addition of Chancel Mbemba, we are still extremely thin in our back line. Janmaat's suspension means McClaren's right back options all involve someone playing out of position. Mbemba could move to the right with Steven Taylor featuring in the center. Vurnon Anita could also play right back in a pinch. These are not ideal options for a position that will have to deal with Manchester United and, more specifically, Memphis Depay this weekend..
I hope Thauvin does well to justify his signing, but our situation shows our priorities are not in line with the reality on the pitch.