Newcastle United boss Rafael Benitez must have a lot to ponder after his side’s recent 3-2 defeat to Manchester United.
The Magpies came closer than they had ever been to securing all three points after going 2-0 up in the first half, but it was not to be after the Red Devils stormed back in the second half.
However, one thing that will be music to the Spaniard’s ears is the latest admission made by defender Achraf Lazaar.
Lazaar has never been a favourite of Benitez since his arrival, and he was even relegated to United’s reserve team this season due to not being a part of the manager’s plans for the club.
In a recent interview with Italian outlet Calcio Mercato, the outcast admitted that that he would like to “convince” Benitez that he is good enough to play, but also said that he “would be ready to join” Serie A outfit Genoa if they made the call.
His move to Italy fell through in this summer’s transfer window, but the fact that he is willing to make it happen in January will be the news that Benitez would have been wanting to hear.
Lazaar is clearly not wanted at St James’ Park and the fact that he has started to recognise this is a step in the right direction for both himself and the club.
It is not fair on him to have to stay at a club that clearly do not want him – so Newcastle must pull out all of the stops to ensure that he moves to Genoa in January.
Nevertheless, Lazaar’s remarks will be music to Benitez’ ears, as it may mean that he could finally be rid of a player who has never made a positive contribution since his arrival.