|Add capMontpellier centre-back Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa (on the ball) failed to turn up on Tynesidetion|
Newcastle United’s troubles are showing no signs of easing after Montpellier centre-back Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa did not arrive for a planned medical and skipper Fabricio Coloccini failed to resolve his future at a meeting with club officials.
Newcastle have had an offer of around £7 million for Yanga-Mbiwa accepted, but should Arsenal also bid for the defender, the St James’ Park club could see one of their targets poached by a Premier League rival for the second time in this window.
Managing Director Derek Llambias is still smarting after QPR made a last-hour move for striker Loic Remy, matching Newcastle’s offer to Marseille, before persuading the France international to move to Loftus Road by paying him double what he would have earned in the North-East.
Telegraph Sport has been told Newcastle still expect Yanga-Mbiwa to arrive on Tyneside, with the club blaming the weather for the delay, but these are anxious times for supporters after what happened with Remy.
Arsenal have been in contact with Montpellier after news of Newcastle’s bid was leaked in France to ask about the size of their offer, but they have not made a formal bid.
Whether Yanga-Mbiwa has decided to wait to see if an offer comes from the north London club remains to be seen, although that might explain the delay in his travel to the north east.
Newcastle are working hard to bring Toulouse midfielder Moussa Sissoko to Tyneside. The 22-year-old has less than six months remaining on his contract and Newcastle were going to wait until the summer to sign him as a free agent, but Saturday’s home defeat to Reading, which leaves them just one place above the drop zone, means they could attempt to bring him in earlier than planned.
Newcastle have also had a bid of 750,000 euros rejected by Bordeaux for striker Yoan Gouffran. The Ligue 1 side want around 1m for the forward, who is out of contract at the end of the season and Newcastle will decide in the next 48 hours whether to raise the bid.
Gouffran impressed Newcastle manager Alan Pardew when the sides met in the Europa League last year, although they are continuing to look at several other targets across Europe.
Even if the 26-year-old does arrive at St James’ Park, he is not necessarily seen as a direct replacement for Demba Ba following his departure for Chelsea and Newcastle may well look to bring in two forwards before the window shuts given their lack of strength in that area.
Pardew is keen on rivalling local rivals Sunderland to sign Danny Graham from Swansea, but chief scout Graham Carr is not a big admirer and the board are reluctant to spend £4m on a 27-year-old who has played top flight football for just 18 months.
Coloccini’s future also remains clouded in confusion after a meeting with the club’s hierarchy on Monday did not end with the anticipated announcement of an amicable conclusion.
The 30-year-old has expressed a desire to return to Argentina because of personal problems, but Newcastle want him to remain with them, at least until the end of the season.
Further talks are likely this week, but fans are growing increasingly alarmed by the failure to reach a compromise with the club’s captain and fear he is continuing to demand to leave immediately, even though the club who want to sign him, San Lorenzo, cannot afford to pay a fee.
Both sides attended the meeting with their lawyers, which suggests there are potentially still significant obstacles to overcome.