Seydou Doumbia has a remarkable goalscoring record over the course of his career, scoring over 150 goals at a rate of better than a goal every other game.
Despite this, Walter Sabatini said after Doumbia had come to Newcastle on loan, that the striker had made a mistake because ‘the Premier league isn’t his Championship’.
The AS Roma Director of Football was speaking from painful experience because he had helped put the signing of Seydou Doumbia together, when signing the player for £11m from CSKA Moscow.
It turns out Serie A wasn’t Doumbia’s Championship either, the player only getting six starts and scoring two goals.
Now Walter Sabatini has been speaking about the Ivory Coast striker once again, saying that he always knew Doumbia would be a ‘flop’ at Newcastle, saying that the striker had got a fancy for playing in England after his Champions League goals against ‘Manchester’.
The last few years seeing Seydou Doumbia enjoying a remarkable scoring record against the ‘Manchester’ teams:
5 November 2013 Manchester City 5 CSKA Moscow 2 (scored two)
21 October 2014 CSKA Moscow 2 Manchester City 2 (scored one)
5 November 2014 Manchester City 1 CSKA Moscow 2 (scored two)
21 October 2015 CSKA Moscow 1 Manchester United 1 (scored one)
Doumbia has scored almost all of his club goals in the weak Swiss and Russian leagues but 16 Champions League goals in only 19 starts (plus four as sub) is a stand out statistic for any forward.
The fact remains though that the Seydou Doumbia deal was even more disastrous than the Facundo Ferreyra one.
Doumbia may have played 29 minutes more than Fabricio Coloccini’s mate but the stakes were far higher this time around.
With Newcastle desperate for goals and defenders, how Graham Carr and Mike Ashley failed to see the value in strengthening those positions properly in January is anybody’s guess.
Three midfielders were brought in, including the pointless Henri Saivet purchase, and then Doumbia on loan – someone who hadn’t played for two months and was way short of fitness.
Doumbia revealed himself after signing that the Newcastle move was very much a last minute one, with contact made only in the final days of the January transfer window.
Quite why this huge gamble on both Dounbia’s fitness and suitability was taken by Newcastle, is unbelievable.
It may well have been a ‘mistake’ for Seydou Doumbia but it was a disaster for Newcastle United.
The club relegated whilst the striker earned a relative fortune for doing nothing, only seen when posting pictures of shopping trips on Instagram and popping over to watch the Moscow derby after being left out of the Newcastle first team picture altogether.
Rafa Benitez giving him a few minutes as a sub in his first game which ended in defeat at Leicester. Then having seen enough, Rafa never even included Doumbia on the bench for the rest of the season.
Speaking to Pagine Romaniste in Italy, AS Roma Director of Sport, Walter Sabatini:
“He (Seydou Doumbia) wanted to go to Newcastle at all costs but I knew he would be a flop there.
“He went to Newcastle because he had a strong attraction to that type of football, having scored against Manchester in the Champions League.”
Previously, Walter Sabatini said the following about the player when talking to Gazzetta dello Sport:
“Seydou Doumbia had many offers last year but now things are more complicated because he made the mistake of going to Newcastle – the Premier League isn’t his championship.”