Chelsea ‘open talks’ with player Allan Saint-Maximin wants to see at Newcastle United

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The Magpies face competition from several clubs for one of their reported January targets.

Chelsea have reportedly opened talks with Newcastle United transfer target Marcus Thuram.

The Borussia Monchengladbach forward is believed to be on the radar of a whole host of top clubs around Europe as he approaches the final months of his current contract with the Bundesliga club. Interest in the 25-year-old has been ramped up after he hit form with 13 goals and four assists in just 17 appearances during the first half of the season.

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That led to a number of scouts watching his progress during the World Cup Finals after he played a part in France’s run to the final of the tournament, before they suffered a penalty shoot-out defeat against Argentina.

Magpies manager Eddie Howe revealed he was one onlooker as he responded to questions about a potential move for Thuram following Allan Saint-Maximin’s confession he had spoken to his fellow Frenchman about life on Tyneside.

Speaking last month, Howe said: “Well done, Maxi! He’s (Thuram) a top player. But yeah, no more than that. He’s one that I watched in the World Cup for sure but no more than that.”

Newcastle face severe competition for Thuram after the likes of Bayern Munich, Inter Milan, Roma and Arsenal were all believed to have shown an interest in securing a free transfer deal during the summer transfer window. But journalist Fabrizio Romano has revealed Chelsea are looking to steal a march on their rivals by opening talks over a cut-price deal to bring Thuram to the Premier League before the end of the month.

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He tweeted: “Understand Chelsea have opened talks to explore a January deal for Marcus Thuram. The French striker’s on many top clubs list being a free agent in June, Chelsea exploring options in January. Thuram will take his time and consider all the options, as @Santi_J_FM (Foot Mercato journalist Santi Arouna) called.”

United ready to trigger ‘acceptable’ release clause of La Liga star

Not for the first time in recent months, Newcastle have been linked with a move for Real Mallorca midfielder Lee Kang-In.

Kangin Lee of Korea Republic battles for possession with Nicolas De La Cruz of Uruguay during the World Cup Group H match (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)Kangin Lee of Korea Republic battles for possession with Nicolas De La Cruz of Uruguay during the World Cup Group H match (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
Kangin Lee of Korea Republic battles for possession with Nicolas De La Cruz of Uruguay during the World Cup Group H match (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images) | Getty Images

The South Korea international has ‘serious options’ to leave the La Liga club during the January transfer window after the likes of Burnley, Feyenoord and Aston Villa were all suggested as possible destinations by Spanish outlet Marca. However, the same report states Newcastle’s ‘excessive economic power’ means they are willing to meet a £14.9m release clause in the midfielder’s current contract.

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