Tuesday, January 15th, 2013
Despite losing out to QPR on Loic Remy, Newcastle look set to delve back into the French Ligue 1 market to strengthen their squad in the January 2013 window.
BeIN Sport report this evening that Newcastle boss Alan Pardew and his scouting team have targeted two players: St Etienne striker Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Montpellier defender Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa (pictured).
Last week it was reported in France that Newcastle were considering an offer for Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang following an excellent first half of the season for St Etienne.
This was put to one side when Newcastle appeared to be closing in on Remy, but Aubameyang now looks the likely candidate to replace Demba Ba.
Today, Aubameyang was widely quoted saying he will stay in France for the rest of the season: “I say it again, I am not thinking about leaving. I have a lot of interest, but the best solution is to stay at St Etienne and leave in the summer. It is very clear in my mind that these will be my last six months with St Etienne. Then, I don’t know.”
The 23-year-old striker added: ”It is nice to already have offers from England and I hope to leave for a club that will allow me to keep improving. There could be a surprise, but I am not planning on staying in France.”
Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa has been on he radars of some of the biggest clubs in Europe, including AC Milan and Arsenal for some time.
The Montpellier centre back, also 23, recently said it was his dream to play for Manchester United but could see Newcastle as a stepping stone in English football.
Yanga-Mbiwa may also come in at Newcastle as a replacement for Fabricio Coloccini who is reportedly keen to return to Argentina in the coming weeks.
Newcastle fans will be hoping Mike Ashley stumps up the cash for these two promising players, who very much fit the profile of Toon super scout Graham Carr.
Video evidence of Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa below.