Exclusive: Fabricio Coloccini set to quit Newcastle

Club captain is on his way, but Magpies agree deal for Yoan Gouffran

Fabricio Coloccini is heading out of Newcastle United after he told officials he does not want to play another game for the club.

The 31-year-old captain now plans to leave Tyneside in his desire to return home to Argentina as he bids to deal with "personal matters". Coloccini's wife is already believed to have returned home to Argentina.

Talks had taken place earlier this week between Coloccini's representatives and officials from Newcastle in a bid to broker a peace deal where the central defender would stay at St James' Park until the end of the season, at which point his position would be reassessed.

However, after extensive discussions they failed to reach agreement and now the player is set to quit.

In the background to all this was the vocal interest of the Argentinian side San Lorenzo, for whom Coloccini played on loan in the 2000-01 season. Coloccini's father Osvaldo also works at the club.

They have not been able to find the funding to buy the player from Newcastle, who are currently embroiled in a fight for their Premier League future. Coloccini's £60,000-a-week salary is way out of their budget. They were similarly unable to negotiate a transfer fee for the player.

A statement from the Argentinian club confirmed defeat in their ambitious attempts to sign the Newcastle captain.

"Finally, after long negotiations, we announce that Fabricio Coloccini will not join the roster of San Lorenzo," it read. "It is not possible to release the Newcastle player, and therefore the club will look for another alternative to strengthen the defence."

That was seen in some quarters as offering the possibility of Coloccini staying at Newcastle. However, the player, who first told club officials of his desire to quit Tyneside on 10 January, has instead reaffirmed his decision to end his four-and-a-half years at St James' Park.

Coloccini was signed for £10.3 million from Spanish side Deportivo La Coruna when Kevin Keegan was in charge in 2008. Newcastle were relegated to the Championship that season but he excelled during the following campaign when Newcastle won promotion and then established himself as one of the most cultured central defenders in the Premier League the season after.

He signed a new Newcastle contract in March 2012 and was voted into the PFA team of the year, but the last few months have been troubled for the Argentine and he now plans to return home. Coloccini does not intend to play against Aston Villa in Tuesday's crucial relegation battle at Villa Park – their next game – but Newcastle could have half a new team in place by then.

The Bordeaux forward Yoan Gouffran will be unveiled this morning after a fee was agreed between Newcastle and the Ligue 1 side. The 26-year-old has scored 12 goals in France this season and has signed a four-and-a-half year contract.

Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa is almost certain to start the game following his £6.7m move from French champions Montpellier. Mathieu Debuchy will start his third game following his £5 million switch from Lille.

Defender Massadio Haïdara is also on the brink of moving to St James' Park from Nancy and Alan Pardew's side are battling with Arsenal for the signature of the promising 19-year-old Bastia midfielder Florian Thauvin.

Yanga-Mbiwa, the 23-year-old France international with three caps for his country to his name, and had also attracted interest from Arsenal, believes he has signed for a club who can fight for a Champions League place when the influx of new players have settled.

"In the long term people talk about the top four in the Premier League but in the players we have on board, and the manager we have, we can definitely consider closing that gap," the central defender, who can also play as a full-back said.

"With the manager's ideas, we can consider the top four or top six. Looking in the longer term we can hope to challenge for the title. Why not?

"I will do everything I can to help team spirit and make sure we are acting as one from the first minute until the last. Last year at Montpellier nobody expected that we would win the league but we had the mentality and solidity to do it with a good team spirit.

"The Premier League is the biggest league in the world and one of those leagues that everybody watches. One of the reasons I came here was to find out how good I am and to fulfil one of my dreams."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: ‘We will not sit down with Nicola Sturgeon’, says Ed Balls

'We will not sit down with Nicola Sturgeon'

In an exclusive interview, Ed Balls says he won't negotiate his first Budget with SNP MPs - even if Labour need their votes to secure its passage
VE Day 70th anniversary: How ordinary Britons celebrated the end of war in Europe

How ordinary Britons celebrated VE Day

Our perception of VE Day usually involves crowds of giddy Britons casting off the shackles of war with gay abandon. The truth was more nuanced
They came in with William Caxton's printing press, but typefaces still matter in the digital age

Typefaces still matter in the digital age

A new typeface once took years to create, now thousands are available at the click of a drop-down menu. So why do most of us still rely on the old classics, asks Meg Carter?
Discovery of 'missing link' between the two main life-forms on Earth could explain evolution of animals, say scientists

'Missing link' between Earth's two life-forms found

New microbial species tells us something about our dark past, say scientists
The Pan Am Experience is a 'flight' back to the 1970s that never takes off - at least, not literally

Pan Am Experience: A 'flight' back to the 70s

Tim Walker checks in and checks out a four-hour journey with a difference
Humans aren't alone in indulging in politics - it's everywhere in the animal world

Humans aren't alone in indulging in politics

Voting, mutual back-scratching, coups and charismatic leaders - it's everywhere in the animal world
Ronald McDonald the muse? Why Banksy, Ron English and Keith Coventry are lovin' Maccy D's

Ronald McDonald the muse

A new wave of artists is taking inspiration from the fast food chain
13 best picnic blankets

13 best picnic blankets

Dine al fresco without the grass stains and damp bottoms with something from our pick of picnic rugs
General Election 2015: Ed Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

He was meant to be Labour's biggest handicap - but has become almost an asset
General Election 2015: A guide to the smaller parties, from the the National Health Action Party to the Church of the Militant Elvis Party

On the margins

From Militant Elvis to Women's Equality: a guide to the underdogs standing in the election
Amr Darrag: Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister in exile still believes Egypt's military regime can be replaced with 'moderate' Islamic rule

'This is the battle of young Egypt for the future of our country'

Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister Amr Darrag still believes the opposition can rid Egypt of its military regime and replace it with 'moderate' Islamic rule, he tells Robert Fisk
Why patients must rely less on doctors: Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'

Why patients must rely less on doctors

Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'
Sarah Lucas is the perfect artist to represent Britain at the Venice Biennale

Flesh in Venice

Sarah Lucas has filled the British pavilion at the Venice Biennale with slinky cats and casts of her female friends' private parts. It makes you proud to be a woman, says Karen Wright
11 best anti-ageing day creams

11 best anti-ageing day creams

Slow down the ageing process with one of these high-performance, hardworking anti-agers
Juventus 2 Real Madrid 1: Five things we learnt, including Iker Casillas is past it and Carlos Tevez remains effective

Juventus vs Real Madrid

Five things we learnt from the Italian's Champions League first leg win over the Spanish giants