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French Media Reveal Why Remy Needs To Move

7 years ago
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We’ve had our resident translator, Pierre, scouring the French media for information today as confirmation came that Marseille had agreed a transfer fee with Newcastle for the transfer of Loic Remy.

When scanning the French newspapers, he came across the following very interesting article printed in the French broadsheet newspaper, ‘The Journal du Dimanche’.

The article is outdated in one small way as since publication it has now been confirmed that Remy was withdrawn from the Marseille squad to take on Sochaux tonight but the piece itself gives a lot of background which makes clear why now Marseille are allegedly willing to take around 10m Euros for a player they quoted 25m Euros to Tottenham only 12 months ago.

Rémy’s Heavy Baggage

OM striker, affected by problems off the pitch is slowly finding his best.

During the winter transfer window of 2012, OM sought at all costs to get rid of André-Pierre Gignac and rebuked the advances of Tottenham for Loïc Rémy, valued at 25 million euros. A year later, Gignac is first choice for the team says President Vincent Labrune, and is now ready to accept an offer of 10 million euros for Remy. Given the financial stakes, the Remy file is sensitive. Marseilles’ leaders want to sell him without delay. But so far, the player has refused Queens Park Rangers and is stalling with Newcastle. According to The Independent, Arsenal would be interested as he was regarded as the new Thierry Henry.

But Remy, 26, is a shadow of the thoroughbred striker who helped L’OM rise to the top for the last two seasons. He no longer plays or plays very little (two starts in L1, and 1 goal). When he is given a chance, he is unrecognisable. We often refer to the fact that he has been injured time and time again over the past ten months. The bitterness felt after not being selected for the Euros when he was considered to be part of the core of Laurent Blanc squad. You can see his lack of confidence following the success of Mathieu Valbuena and Gignac, who have become indispensable to the French national team. All this has undoubtedly compounded the situation. But the troubles are deeper.

A drunken night in Lyon
The most recent rumours describe a tormented boy, far from the image that he normally portrays. They say he has become elusive and disillusioned to the point of saying to his close relatives that he is ready to quit his career, which was almost forced upon him following a heart problem detected during his transfer from Nice to Marseille in 2010. If he had already had some ups and downs, it had never reached this point. His carefree approach during his summer vacation has annoyed his employers: he did not look after his thigh injury and quickly broke down. As the season has progressed his excesses have become more and more obvious and divulged in a town where nothing is kept secret. Between Christmas and New Year, he distinguished himself at the Sofitel Hotel in Lyon, where he had gone to celebrate his birthday in advance (he was born 2nd January) before resuming with OM by being drunk in the morning and created an incident in the establishment.

Wrong crowd? Dark side of fame? This change of attitude made people ask questions. Remy separated from his long-time agent. He withdrew and marginalised himself in the dressing room: even with Valbuena, who he had close ties with and now being quite distant.

“I’m not in touch with him every day, but I did not feel that he is someone who is losing the plot. He is someone very balanced” snapped his lawyer, Jose Allegrini.

Change of scenery to bounce back?
Coincidence? Over the past year, the attacker is mixed up with a dark story of paternity. A young woman with whom he had a relationship, says he is the father of her child, now aged 14 months. He denies it. His lawyer states that the maintenance claim is typical of a football gold-digger. The person concerned, Valentine, claims to have damning documents. The case has escalated but drags: the hearing has been adjourned until Spring.

In this context you would think that he might want a change of scenery. But he does not intend to let anyone dictate his destination. In Marseille, he earns 250,000 euros per month and his contract runs until 2015. During the training camp in Marrakech this week, he was sharp and motivated and played well in the match. Despite this, he knows he will be on the bench at Sochaux tonight and has been demoted in the hierarchy of strikers available for Elijah Baup. But Marseille’s coach has publicly supported him “Technically, he has not lost anything. Physically, he has regained full fitness. His behaviour has been spot on.”

by Solenn Cherrier – The Journal du Dimanche

Many fans may see the Remy transfer, if it goes through, as maybe similar in many ways to the arrival of Hatem Ben Arfa. A player with undoubted ability but who has lost his way and comes with a price tag that reflects this. You can only assume that any transfer would have been a whole lot harder if it wasn’t for the big French connection already at St.James’ Park.  I think it is case of everything crossed on this transfer, he could make or break our season.

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