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Report: NUFC told to ignore January transfer as midfield target eyes lofty heights

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LOSC Lille midfielder Boubakary Soumare has told any interested side to forget about a potential January transfer, following links with Newcastle United, Tottenham Hotspur and Wolverhampton Wanderers.

Soumare has been a regular of Christophe Galtier’s plans at the Stade Pierre Mauroy this season, but the emergence of Renato Sanches was said to have led the Les Dogues’ hierarchy to warm to a potential mid-season separation with the France U21 international.

Spurs boss Mourinho was even tipped to be ‘waiting’ for Soumare in North London, though any side interested in signing the defensive midfielder – including Valencia and Real Madrid – faced forking out between €50m and €60million (£42.6m-£51.1m).

The valuation Lille slapped on Soumare did not stop more recent reports linking him with a move to the North East or Molineux, though the 20-year-old has no interest in leaving the Stade Pierre Mauroy any time soon with Les Dogues currently five points behind Stade Rennais in the last Champions League qualifying spot for Ligue 1.

“I don’t see myself leaving,” Soumare told L’Equipe, via quotes by Sport Witness. “I feel good here. I’m learning [and] we have high goals – like the Champions League. A departure is not on the agenda.

Would you like the club to try and sign Soumare in the summer?





“I want to do a full season, yes. I’m not saying I hold a position, but the place I have today, I went to earn it with my work, I won it. I can’t see myself leaving without having seen this through. Now is not the time to leave. I don’t want to leave with regrets.”

Soumare is not opposed to a move away from Lille once he has met his lofty expectations, though, adding that he has already discussed the potential of a transfer with his manager Galtier.

“I have already discussed with the coach,” he noted when asked about a future transfer.

“I told him very clearly, I have a very clear idea of ​​where I want to go in my career.”

Soumare has started 14 of his 18 Ligue 1 appearances this season from a possible 20 outings, having sat out matchday three after being shown a straight red card 39 minutes into Lille’s 1-0 defeat at SC Amiens in August.

Galtier latter left the France youth international – capped at U16, U17, U18, U19, U20 and U21 levels – on the bench as Lille beat FCO Dijon 1-0 in November, the only time Soumare has not featured in the action when named in a matchday squad this Ligue 1 term.

While Les Dogues’ asking price is high, Soumare has shown himself to be a quality emerging defensive midfield talent this season – hence the vivid interest around Europe and Lille’s valuation.

Soumare has averaged 1.6 successful tackles from 2.3 attempts per 90 minutes in the French top-flight this term, per WhoScored data, plus 1.3 interceptions, 0.4 passes blocked, wins 0.9 of 1.5 aerial duels and plays 0.8 key balls.

In other Newcastle United news, the club have made inquiries to sign a £7.5k-p/w midfielder this month.

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