Matz Sels has at last got his move away from St James Park.
Sold for a reported £3.6m to Strasbourg, a loss of a couple of million for Newcastle after Rafa recruited him two years ago.
As the weeks dragged by after a permanent move to Anderlecht failed, it was looking increasingly likely that the keeper could be staying at Newcastle.
However, good news all round and he joins a club that narrowly avoided relegation last season, ending up 15th in Ligue 1.
Strasbourg have a couple more friendlies lined up before kicking off their league season away at Bordeaux on Sunday 12 August.
Good luck to Matz Sels with his new club. Despite not getting a league game since September 2016 and dropped later that Championship season even from the bench, he was professional and didn’t moan. Also, he genuinely seems desperate to play football and no doubt has taken a wage cut to make this move happen, unlike those such as Marveaux, Obertan and Haidara who were happy to sit and do nothing to ensure they kept receiving higher pay at Newcastle.
Matz Sels interviewed by the official RC Strasbourg Alsace website:
Matz, what made you decide to sign in Strasbourg?
“The discussions I had with the leaders. There are some nice things to do in this club. It is also a big city, as attractive as Brussels. Racing made an effort to recruit me. I will give the maximum here. It’s a great challenge.”
You played in Belgium and England. You will discover the Ligue 1. What view do you have on the championship of France?
“It’s a good race, a difficult championship with big teams. It makes you want “.
You were in the first list of 28 players for the World Cup with Belgium, finally removed from the final list of 23. A big disappointment?
“Yes, I was disappointed but it’s part of a footballer’s life. Afterwards, I was a supporter of my national team. I have not given up and I will do my best to find the jersey of the Red Devils.”
How does it feel to play in the country that eliminated Belgium?
“Sometimes, in Belgium, it was said that it was unfair and that the best team was the Red Devils team. But when you beat Uruguay, Argentina, Belgium and Croatia, you just deserved to be world champions. “
Marc Keller, President of RCSA (Strasbourg):
“I am very happy that Matz Sels has chosen Racing.
“We were looking for an experienced goalkeeper. It was a priority for the club.
“Matz will bring his experience, both with his various clubs and with the national team of Belgium.
“For him, for the club and for all our supporters, I wish him the greatest possible success among us “.