Newcastle United have outbid Genoa in the race to sign Lille’s defensive midfielder Thiago Maia, according to Le10Sport.
The French news outlet claims that Genoa had offered £6.4million and 50 per cent of the resale value of the 22-year-old Brazilian.
However it is understood that the Magpies have now tabled a higher bid for Maia as they aim to land the former Santos midfielder before the transfer deadline at 5pm on Thursday.
Le10Sport adds that Maia is yet to make a final decision on his future at Lille despite only earning 11 starts in Ligue 1 last season.
Maia struggled to get as much game-time at Lille last season than he did in his debut campaign at the Ligue 1 club, but he is still a relatively young defensive midfielder who could turn into a good signing for Newcastle if he is handed enough first-team opportunities. Although it remains to be seen how much Newcastle have offered for Maia (it is at least £6.4million), there’s a good chance that it’s nowhere near the Brazilian’s reported £50million release clause [The Sun] or even the £12.9million fee that Lille paid for him in 2017. That could be a good thing. Maia’s lack of game-time last season has reduced his market value and if Newcastle still see a great deal of potential in the 22-year-old then Mike Ashley will no doubt be drooling over the prospect of signing someone with good resale value. Newcastle’s transfer business this summer has already seen them sign one Brazilian 22-year-old and another 22-year-old from France. Are they going to land another 22-year-old this summer who is both Brazilian and currently playing in France?