Not named in the squad for Southend, it has now emerged that Cheick Tiote is in ‘advanced talks’ to join Al Jazira.
According to their information, Sky Sports say that the Newcastle midfielder’s move to Abu Dhabi is imminent.
It remains to be seen what Newcastle will get out of any deal but Sky say that Cheick Tiote is set to sign a three year deal worth £4m a year.
Not bad for a player who has only started 26 league games in the last two years and has averaged less than 20 league starts per season over the course of the past eight seasons.
Like Papiss Cisse, Cheick Tiote only had/has one season to go on his contract and looked a sure thing to leave.
It remains to be seen what happens now with Tim Krul and Vurnon Anita, two other players who only have 11 months of their current deal to go and no news of any extension so far.
Pre-season has seen Cheick Tiote only given 34 minutes in total over the course of three (now four) friendlies, so Rafa making clear he wasn’t in his plans.