Real Madrid step up pursuit of Moussa Sissoko, £35m price tag


Real Madrid are set to step up their pursuit of Newcastle United’s Moussa Sissoko, 26.

The Spaniards will offer the Magpies two players for season-long loans in part-exchange for the French international.

Mariana Diaz, 23, scored a phenomenal goal in the weekend’s 3 – 2 win over Chelsea. The striker is highly rated at the Bernabeu and seen by coach Zinedine Zidane as having a bright future.

Real are set to add Marcos Llorente, 21 to the deal. The midfielder is the great-nephew of legendary winger Francisco Gente who played in all six of the club’s early Champions Cup triumphs.

Newcastle slapped a £35m price tag on the midfielder following a series of prominent performances for his country during the latter stages of Euro 2016. So far, the only offer received for Sissoko has come from West Bromwich Albion prior to the tournament beginning.

The Magpies have previously asserted that they were not interested in part-exchange deals but Rafa Benitez may be tempted by the offer of two players whose progress he will have been well aware of from his unsuccessful stint in the Bernabeu hotseat.

Mohamed Diame, 29, underwent a medical yesterday on Tyneside after Newcastle triggered the £4.5m release clause in his contract and the Hull midfielder is expected to complete his transfer today. His arrival may hasten Sissoko’s departure.

Aston Villa’s Ciaran Clark, 26, is understood to have completed his medical as well in a busy day at St James Park. The Northern Ireland defender will discuss personal terms with Newcastle today.


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