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Bayer Leverkusen Target Newcastle United Striker Papiss Cisse

by Mark Brus

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Papiss Cisse

Magpies forward could be set for Bundesliga move.

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Bayer Leverkusen manager Sami Hyypia has admitted he is on the lookout for a new striker, and Newcastle’s Papiss Cisse could be his number one target, CaughtOffside understands.

Leverkusen’s Stefan Kiessling was the top scorer in the Bundesliga last season, but Hyypia is concerned that the team would struggle if he were to pick up an injury, and hopes to try his luck with a £10million offer for Senegal international Cisse.

“We will have a problem if Stefan picks up an injury,” he told German sports magazine, Kicker.

“Therefore it’s important to consider if we can sign a good new striker. This is a priority.”

Cisse has played in Germany before, proving a big success in his three seasons with SC Freiburg, where to this day he holds the record for the most goals scored by an African player in one season, with 22 strikes in the 2010/11 season.

He then joined Newcastle in the 2012 January transfer window, and got off to a flying start to life in England, scoring 13 goals in his first 14 games for the club, including a famous volley against Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

However, his form dipped last season, with just 8 goals in 36 appearances in the Premier League and it is thought that the club would consider listening to offers for him if they came in, particularly with the arrival on loan of Queens Park Rangers striker Loic Remy. Another Bundesliga side, Borussia Dortmund, were linked with Cisse earlier in the summer, though they opted to sign Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang from Saint Etienne.

Leverkusen have money to spend after selling star winger Andre Schurrle to Chelsea earlier this summer, and will be keen to strengthen the squad that managed an impressive finish of third in last season’s Bundesliga, securing a place in this season’s Champions League. They have already been successful in signing highly-rated Hamburg starlet Son Heung-Min, though the South Korean international is more of an attacking midfielder than an out-and-out striker.

Magpies manager Alan Pardew is also bracing himself for a bid from PSG for French playmaker Yohan Cabaye, and has admitted his concern that he will lose players late on in this transfer window without the time to replace them.

Cisse has already cast doubt over his future this summer after initially refusing to wear Newcastle’s shirt with the logo of club sponsors ‘Wonga’ on the front, though this particular dispute has since been resolved.


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