Christophe Galtier has hinted at tensions between Lille and Boubakary Soumare.
The 20-year-old, who was linked with a move to the Premier League in the January transfer window, was a surprise absentee from the matchday squad for Sunday’s Ligue 1 clash at home to Marseille.
Instead the hosts went with Jean Emile Onana in central midfield.
Click to play
Tap to play
The video will start in8Cancel
Naturally, Soumare’s absence was a huge talking point after the game as Lille were beaten 2-1 meaning Galtier had to face the music over his decision to drop the midfielder.
Amid links to Chelsea, Manchester United, Liverpool, Real Madrid, Borussia Dortmund and Wolves – as reported by Get French Football News- Galtier’s response could place the aforementioned clubs on alert ahead of the summer transfer window.
“There is a situation at the club that I do not comment on,” Galtier said, as per L’Equipe. “In seasons, there can be tension between a player and his club.
“We’ll settle this internally and find a solution.
“Under these conditions, I therefore decided to work on two other options this week (Niasse and Onana).
“I found it interesting what Onana could do.”
This stance could also alert Newcastle United as in a surprise turn of events, they had agreed a £45m deal with an unnamed club for a massive transfer on deadline day.
After doing some research, Sky Sports claimed that the player in question was Soumare.
However, Steve Bruce suggested that the midfielder rejected a move to St James’ Park.
“We had a bid accepted that would nearly have been a transfer record,” Bruce said “It was accepted by the club, but unfortunately the player wanted to stay where he was.
“We were active, but it didn’t quite happen. It was for somebody else (not Giroud).
“We had the bid accepted but unfortunately the player wanted to stay where he was so you have to…