Newcastle midfielder Moussa Sissoko reportedly favours a move to Liverpool FC over Premier League rivals Arsenal FC, according to reports from the French media.
Newcastle were relegated from the Premier League last season, but are under no financial pressure to offload players. The Magpies’ manager Rafa Benitez is keen to hold on to star player Moussa Sissoko. However, according to L’Equipe [via Get France Football], the French midfielder is not keen on playing in the Championship. The report also states that Newcastle have already rejected a €12M bid from Bundesliga outfit Hamburg.
However, there is a reported interest in the 26-year-old from Premier League heavyweights Arsenal and Liverpool. The midfielder, earlier in an interview with Foot Mercato, highlighted his need to play football at a higher level.
“I want to continue my career in England, at a club that plays in the Champions League because I think the English league is the championship that best fits my style of play,” he said. “We do not know what tomorrow is made. My advisers and I will listen to everything. We will take the best decision together.”
Upon being asked about Arsenal’s interest by Foot Mercato he said, “It’s very flattering. Arsenal is one of the best European clubs. The beautiful Arsenal. We’ll see. I can not tell you that I will go to Arsenal. For now, I’m focused on the team of France and the Euro. I have advisers who manage all this and I hope everything will go well with minimal difficulty for me to find another club.”
The same publication has now claimed that Liverpool are the front-runners for the Frenchman’s signature and Bundesliga outfit Borussia Dortmund have also entered the race to sign the 26-year-old. Sissoko may be tempted by a move to Germany with the allure of Champions League football. However, due to the midfielder’s preferences to stay in England, Liverpool are favourites to sign him.
Reports emerging from Tyneside state that Newcastle are holding out for a fee of around £21.5M, and are yet to receive any offer visibly near their valuation. Newcastle Chronicle have reported that the Magpies’ manager has told the board that he wants to retain the Frenchman but knows that there will be a transfer if the price is met by the interested clubs. The report also states that the club expects an “astronomical” fee up-front and an overall transfer fee in upwards of £20M for the 26-year-old.
Moussa Sissoko is currently with the French national team as the Bleus look ahead to their semi-final fixture against World Champions Germany, in a bid to secure a place in the finals against a Cristiano Ronaldo-powered Portugal. The French midfielder has been a mainstay in the Magpies’ midfield ever since signing from Toulouse and has gone on to make 117 league appearances for the club.
It is unlikely that a player of Sissoko’s talent would want to play second-tier football. The player is in the prime of his footballing career at the age of 26 and is likely to move to a club in the highest tier of major European Leagues. The midfielder seems to prefer to stay in England, which means that Liverpool are the likely favourites to get their hands on Sissoko’s signature.