Press conference: Rafa Benitez confirms Cheick Tiote departure could be imminent
Rafa Benitez has confirmed that an escape route for Cheick Tiote is still more than likely to happen.
Rafa had made it clear the midfielder had no future at Newcastle United but a move to Galatasaray fell down late in the transfer window, despite Tiote having travelled over to Istanbul in anticipation of completing the deal.
There were conflicting claims, with some reports of a failed medical, whilst others said that the Turkish club weren’t prepared to meet the player’s wage demands.
However, at his pre-Derby County press conference on Friday lunchtime, Rafa Benitez said:
“The transfer window in UAE is till open and there may be an offer (for Cheick Tiote).
“We are waiting and he is training with us and will see.”
The league season starts in Qatar on 15 September and their transfer window remains open for a further week after that – it doesn’t matter about the country where the selling club is based, only the buying one, in terms of whether a transfer window is open or closed.
Cheick Tiote has been left out of all of Rafa Benitez’ six matchday squads this season, despite starting all of those final six games of last season in the Premier League – during which Newcastle remained unbeaten.
Rafa looking to clear out the final remnant of that fifth placed team of 2011/12, with the likes of a restored Jonjo Shelvey and new signing Isaac Hayden preferred to Tiote.
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