Date: 10th January 2006 at 11:18am
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Newcastle United manager Graeme Souness has reservations about signing Marseille defender Abdoulaye Meite, simply because he is away in Egypt playing for his country in the African Nations Cup.

The Ivory Coast international has been targeted by the Toon boss, but the Scot is apparently have second thoughts because he wants the player NOW, not next month.

His French club made a statement: ‘For Meite, we await an answer from the Newcastle hierarchy. They are interested but they have reservations as Meite could participate in the African Cup of Nations.

‘Meite will move to an English team. Another English club is very interested in signing him but he is actually with the Ivorian team.’

Bolton Wanderers, Middlesbrough and Everton are just three of a number of other clubs watching the situation.