Newcastle ship Boumsong to Juve for £3.3m

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The Independent Online

Jean-Alain Boumsong's Newcastle nightmare has come to an end with a £3.3m move to Juventus. The 26-year-old French international has joined the Italian side, relegated to Serie B as a result of the recent match-fixing scandal, on a four-year contract.

A statement to the Stock Exchange read: "The amount payable to Newcastle for the transfer is €4.8m plus further sums which are contingent on the future success of Juventus in domestic and Uefa competitions." Juventus will also play a friendly at St James' Park next summer as part of the deal.

Newcastle paid Rangers £8m for Boumsong in January of last year but the former Auxerre player managed just 59 senior appearances and never imposed himself in the way former boss Graeme Souness envisioned. The Scot was intensely loyal to the Frenchman despite a series of error-strewn displays.

He even voiced the opinion that he would be one of the best defenders at the World Cup despite seeing him taken apart by the Cheltenham striker Kayode Odejayi in an FA Cup fourth-round tie in January.

Despite losing his first-team place following the departure of Souness, Boumsong was included in the France squad which made it to the World Cup final in Germany but never kicked a ball in the tournament.

Titus Bramble, Craig Moore, Steven Taylor and Peter Ramage had all eased ahead of him at Newcastle, who will get his £35,000-a-week salary off their books.

The Magpies confirmed that they have agreed a £10m fee with Internazionale for Nigerian striker Obafemi Martins, and are awaiting a response from the player to the personal terms they have offered. "It is now up to the player and the agent," the chairman Freddy Shepherd said.

The Nigeria striker joined Inter from Reggina in 2001, scoring 49 goals in 134 appearances for the Nerazzurri. The 21-year-old forward handed in a transfer request earlier this month when Inter acquired the Argentine striker Hernan Crespo on loan from Chelsea.

"Playing in the Premier League has been a long-term ambition, and I am delighted with the prospect of concluding that in the next couple of days," Martins said.

Newcastle's pursuit of the Real Madrid midfielder Thomas Gravesen and Chelsea's Wayne Bridge is ongoing.

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