Midfielder who rejected £35m Newcastle United move set for St James’ Park visit

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Boubakary Soumare rejected a move to Newcastle United before joining Leicester City from Lille.

Newcastle United can inflict a huge blow on Leicester City and one of their former transfer target’s Premier League survival hopes tonight (kick-off 8pm).

While Eddie Howe’s side require just one point to seal Champions League qualification, the pressure is on the Foxes to win otherwise they’ll be reliant on other teams to retain their top-flight status.

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By claiming three points, Dean Smith’s side can exit the relegation zone on goal difference ahead of hosting West Ham United on the final day. The odds are stacked against the visitors but midfielder Boubakary Soumare is confident.

Leicester City midfielder Boubakary Soumare almost joined Newcastle United under Steve Bruce. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)Leicester City midfielder Boubakary Soumare almost joined Newcastle United under Steve Bruce. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)
Leicester City midfielder Boubakary Soumare almost joined Newcastle United under Steve Bruce. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images) | Getty Images

“For me and all the players at the club, it’s not easy to sum up by just saying it’s difficult,” the Frenchman told LCFC TV. “When you consider the daily work and the effort we’ve put in, to come up short on the results, it’s obviously disappointing.

“But we’ve still got it within us to save the season effectively, with these two matches left. I think we are feeling pretty confident going into these last two matches.

“We really feel that we’re on a mission; that mission of course being to make sure that Leicester City stays afloat in the Premier League.”

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Had things worked out differently, Soumare could have been lining up in Newcastle colours this evening.

United had a £35million bid accepted by Lille in January 2020. The 24-year-old was due to arrive on Tyneside for a medical but decided against the move. Less than 18 months later, Soumare joined Leicester for half the fee Newcastle had agreed.

Soumare continued: “It’s football and in the Premier League, all matches are tough – they are all difficult. It’s up to us at this point to just head to St. James’ in search of those three points.

“We know Newcastle have had a very good season and are tough opponents, but we can only go there and give everything to come away with the victory and three points.”

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