Dimitri Payet may have been the star of the show on Monday night but he says he was very surprised that Marseille sold former teammate Florian Thauvin to Newcastle United.
To relieve financial pressures it was expected that both Giannelli Imbula and Dimitri Payet would be sacrificed and bring in £25m to help balance the books at the French club.
In contrast, Marseille spent very little this summer, with the £5m purchase of Lucas Ocampos their biggest outlay as part of the belt-tightening.
Payet says that when he heard his old club had agreed to sell Florian Thauvin to Newcastle he found it difficult to believe, as Marseille President Vincent Labrune had made clear that he saw the 22 year old winger as the key player at the club.
A player to build a new look team around, with his best years ahead of him.
The fact that Marseille did end up selling Thuavin, suggests that United made the French club an offer they couldn’t refuse, though Dimitri Payet also points to why Mike Ashley may have seen the value in pushing the boat out for the winger.
The West Ham midfielder describes Florian Thauvin as having a lot of qualities but also refers to him potentially having a ‘great resale value’, with the age of the player and his potential.
Dimitri Payet talking to Le Sport 10:
“Florian Thauvin is young and has, as you say nowadays ‘great resale value’ and has a lot of qualities.
“As to him leaving, no, I didn’t think he would leave as the president had made him his key player and gave him an important role.”