Steve Bruce could deliver a masterclass at Newcastle United by convincing Paris Saint-Germain midfielder Idrissa Gana Gueye to accept a Deadline Day loan move.
According to L’Equipe, via GFFN, Gueye has snubbed the offer of joining the Magpies after emerging as a potential target for the St. James’ Park outfit.
The French sports newspaper had reported on Sunday that Toon chiefs had contacted their Parisian counterparts to discuss a deal for the 31-year-old to see out the remainder of the season on Tyneside.
Gueye was not thought to be opposed to a return to the Premier League following three years with Everton but would favour a move to a club higher in the table than United, who sit eight points clear of the relegation zone.
Newcastle had reached an understanding with PSG over a loan move for Gueye before the 74-cap Senegal international rejected the deal, with his future in the French capital appearing increasingly bleak following the appointment of Mauricio Pochettino.
Gueye had started 10 of a potential 17 Ligue 1 fixtures under Thomas Tuchel this season, restricted by ankle and hamstring injuries, but has only played nine minutes since being replaced in the 56th-minute of a 3-0 win over Stade Brest on January 9 by Pochettino.
Gueye has experience of tasting relegation from the Premier League from his one-year spell with Aston Villa in 2015/16, so it is hardly surprising that he would prefer to avoid a dogfight upon a potential return to the division.
Yet Bruce should do all he can to convince the £16m-rated beast to accept a last gasp move to Tyneside, in what would be a masterclass in the market from the under-pressure Magpies boss who has faced relentless calls to be sacked over recent weeks.
While Gueye is seen in France to have struggled to adapt to Ligue 1 as he does not boast the personality needed for a club like PSG, he was one of the best defensive midfielders in the Premier League with Everton and earned a wealth of praise for it.
Sky Sports pundits Jamie Carragher and Phil Neville could only wax lyrical over the Senegal international following a 3-0 win for Everton over Sunderland in September 2016, with former Blues defender Neville describing him as “sensational” and “really special”.
He continued to build on those early efforts in Royal Blue to the point that in his final season, in 2018/19, Gueye ended the term with the second-most successful tackles (142)– one shy of Leicester’s Wilfred Ndidi (143) – and the sixth-most interceptions (74) by any player in the division, per WhoScored.
Bruce would no doubt adore seeing Gueye mop up possession in the engine room at St. James’ Park over the remainder of the season, and should not relent on his interest in the out of favour PSG brute on Deadline Day.