Old Trafford boss interested in St James’ Park duo.
MANCHESTER UNITED are set to step up their interest in Newcastle midfielder Cheick Tiote.
People Sport understands Old Trafford boss Sir Alex Ferguson has been impressed by the 25-year-old tough-tackling Ivory Coast international, who was signed for just £3.5million from Dutch side FC Twente last year.
The United manager also likes their French midfielder Yohan Cabaye but it’s the talents of Tiote that have really caught his eye.
Even before last week’s 6-1 hammering by rivals City, where Anderson and Darren Fletcher failed miserably to control the middle of the park, Ferguson had recognised United’s need for a powerful defensive midfielder – and that Tiote could fill the role. But the 25-year-old signed a six-and-a-half year deal at Newcastle in February meaning it will take a huge offer to tempt owner Mike Ashley into doing business.
SOURCE: Sunday People
Sir Alex Ferguson has been strongly linked with interest in Cheick Tiote for some time, which is not hugely surprising given the impact that Ivorian made at Newcastle United in his first season in the Premier League, but interest in Yohan Cabaye is more than a little surprising and it seems highly unlikely the Magpies would consider selling the French international only arrived at St James’ Park in June.
There is much talk of Man United needing to add more steel to their midfield, hence interest in tough tackling Tiote, and this may be due to the fact that the Old Trafford side does not possess an out and out defensive midfielder. Their central midfield options, from Michael Carrick and Anderson to Tom Cleverley and Darren Fletcher, do not offer anything in the way of resilient tackling and the exit of Owen Hargreaves, a player who Ferguson clearly wanted to fill that role before injury disrupted his career.
25 year old former Lille man Cabaye has been in fine form since his move to Newcastle United but Alan Pardew is sure to fight off interest in both players, the fear may arise however that owner Mike Ashley will consider offers for players having already offloaded the likes of Andy Carroll, Kevin Nolan, Joey Barton and Jose Enrique during 2011.
It is thought that the Premier League champions had previously been linked with an offer of £14m for Tiote over the summer, some four times what Newcastle United had paid FC Twente. Cabaye is valued at around £10m having now fought his way to the fringes of Laurent Blanc’s national team set-up.