On Wednesday, well known Italian journalist Gianluca Di Marzio brought news that a move for Achraf Lazaar was on the cards (see below).

Diego Laxalt is in the process of moving to AC Milan and Genoa were said to be interested in the Newcastle defender as a replacement.

Now Sky Sports in Italy report that Newcastle and Genoa are in discussions about a deal but have reached a bit of a sticking point.

Both sides are happy for the move to be initially a loan for the season but Genoa want to have a buying option at the end of it, whereas Newcastle are insisting  on a ‘forced option’, whereby the Serie A club would have no choice but to buy Achraf Lazaar for a pre-arranged fee next summer.

You can understand it from both sides as the player hasn’t started a single league game for Newcastle and last year his loan was a total flop with Benevento, only starting  six league games and then left out of their official squad in the second half of the season.

Lazaar has played two full Serie A seasons (2014/15 and 2015/16) with Palermo so he has shown he can play at that level. For a player low on confidence and with hardly any football the previous season, moving to a very weak promoted club like Benevento who ended up bottom of the table all season, probably wasn’t the ideal scenario for an attacking left back/win back such as him.

Diego Laxalt has now passed his medical at AC Milan and time is running out for Achraf Lazaar to complete his move.

Serie A kicks off this weekend and like the Premier League they are ending their transfer window before play starts, 8pm tonight (Friday) sees their window close.

The Mag – 15 August 2018:

Achraf Lazaar is currently in no man’s land at Newcastle United.

The 26 year old, along with Rolando Aarons and Henri Saivet, has been totally sidelined by Rafa Benitez, not even given a squad number for the new season.

The Newcastle boss once again getting tough with players who have no future at Newcastle, the manager making it clear they will be training with the kids if they don’t find a new club.

Achraf Lazaar had a nightmare loan spell last season back in Italy, Benevento were bottom of Serie A all year and yet the left sided player struggled to get a game.

The player only making six league starts and then left out of the official squad altogether for the second half of the season.

He tried to arrange a temporary move to the MLS (see below) in a vain attempt to make Morocco’s World Cup squad but that never went anywhere.

However, over in Italy, journalist Gianluca Di Marzio claims a new club could be on the horizon for the Newcastle player.

Di Marzio says that with Diego Laxalt set to join AC Milan, he understands that Genoa are interested in signing Achraf Lazaar as a replacement.

Lazaar was a success with Palermo in Serie A before moving to Newcastle, so hopefully somebody such as Genoa will take a chance on him, presumably a loan with a buying option is the best we could hope for.

The Mag – 21 May 2018:

Fair to say Achraf Lazaar won’t rank as one of Rafa Benitez’ better signings.

Signed for £3m back in summer 2016, Rafa then found the player not good enough to make a single start even in a Championship season.

With no chance of then being involved in the 2017/18 Premier League season and with no clubs interested in buying him, the left sided player went on loan to Benevento for a year.

Staying bottom of Serie A for this entire season it has been a nightmare for them, though arguably an even worse one for Achraf Lazaar.

After six league starts early on, Lazaar then was frozen out after making his last start on 5 November 2017.

Even worse was to come as Benevento didn’t even name the player in their official Serie A squad after the January transfer window. Having already played for Newcastle back in August 2017, Achraf Lazaar was in a position whereby he was hindered by the FIFA rule of not being able to play for more than two clubs in one season.

In March, Lazaar then surprised everybody by claiming (see below) that there were three MLS clubs interested in signing him, with the player wanting one last chance at maybe making the World Cup with Morocco this summer, if he could get regular football.

The MLS season started in March 2018 and because their timings are out of sync with European leagues, Achraf Lazaar believed he could potentially play in America if making an agreement and sorting out the ‘red tape’.

A bit similar to Hatem Ben Arfa who sat out the remainder of the 2014/15 season without any football. However, at the time it was said that he did consider a short spell in America to give him some football.

Lazaar last played for his country in October 2016 in a World Cup qualifier against Gabon (ended 0-0).

However, the American dream never got off the ground and now Achraf Lazaar clearly has no chance of making the Morocco squad.

As for club football, he is set to report back to Newcastle for pre-season training on 2 July and see where the future then takes him.

Hopefully he will be able to find another club and doesn’t become yet another player who Newcastle can’t shift because of the wages he is on but not good enough to play in the English top tier. If Newcastle are to shift the player then you imagine they would have to basically give him away, so a club at a lower level can satisfy the player’s wage demands.

On Sunday, we released the results of our poll of thousands of fans asking which Newcastle players should be definitely retained for next season, along with Jack Colback, Achraf Lazaar got the very lowest support of only 2% (see full results HERE).

Achraf Lazaar speaking back in March 2018:

“I want to be at the World Cup with Morocco.

“Representing my country is the greatest satisfaction and I want to be at the World Cup with Morocco, as that would be a dream.

“Now I will do everything I can to earn my chance.

“Unfortunately, I have been pushed out of the Benevento squad.

“Coming here was a bad decision and I wouldn’t do it again, even if I got to know the extraordinary President Vigorito. I still respect him, despite the decision they have made.

“I have nothing against Coach Roberto De Zerbi, as he made his choices.

I belong to Newcastle and must think about what is best for my career and right now I need playing time.

“I can confirm that there are three clubs who are interested in MLS, but I prefer to respect those clubs, and not name the ones who contacted me.

“It is not easy purely in terms of red tape to go to America but with my new agent Roberto De Fanti we are seeking the best solution.

“I really miss the Morocco squad, as I played during the qualifiers for the World Cup and will do everything to get my place in the side.

“I haven’t been the usual Lazaar in recent months, but I have matured a great deal, I was a kid when I first became known and now I am a man.”



  • Wezza

    We must be the worst team to deal with. Charnley hasn’t got a clue.

    • Ram Kishore

      We really have no clue as to what is happening..

  • Down Under Mag

    The more stories you hear, the more it reinforces the viewpoint that those running the club have literally zero understanding about football. Charnley is clearly just making it up as he goes… no wonder he gets paid so much less than his Premier League counterparts and is happy with that!

    • Martin Rooney

      So given that for this deal it’s rumoured we’re paying half his £15k a week wages, a fair gift to get him away from Rafa’s squad which is what he wants, is it not reasonable that the club do all they can to get him off the books for good.

      Is it not fair to assume that Rafa will not want him next summer either?
      As loan deals will last until mid may or June 1st at which point he comes back on to the NUFC pay role in full until end of August when the desperate clubs come looking for their own stop gap, costing the club £180K.

      Surely it is fair and reasonable for NUFC to try and get the Lazaar episode of their history to a permanent end by attempting to get the very best deal for the club until the very last minute what sense would it be to just agree to a deal which doesn’t suit when there is still time to negotiate.

      It seems a little schizophrenic to defend the agents holding while doing deals using this tactic for incoming players a few weeks ago and then attack the club for doing the same.

      • Kenny

        who says they are only paying half his salary, you.
        we can add you to the list of fukwit`s

        • Martin Rooney

          follow the news and get more info than that which is written on the slanted themag, Genoa want nufc to pay half his wages, nufc will agree as long as they take him for good at the end of the loan.

          That is the position at the moment.

          • Kenny

            no it isn`t it`s a rumour, fukwit troll 🤡

          • Rabid Dog

            Actually it’s pretty widely reported as paying half of his €1.1M wages….

          • SuperDesHamilton

            Rabid dog, Rabid gimp more like

          • Ben Jones

            They ain’t happy unless they can present it as a negative, your fair and no doubt accurate take on the situation leads to a sensible solution by the club for the good of the club, this angers them. Twisted

        • panther

          added him last week

  • Kenny

    fukwit Penfold can`t even do a simple loan deal, he stays at Newcastle & they have to pay him another £1m in salary for sitting on his a$$ this season, tossa`s

  • HarryHype59

    This guy is another bargain basement “punt” that isn’t good enough and ends up costing the club a fortune in wages.

    • NUFCDan

      For every 5 knackers you get one Sisokko or Cabaye who makes fatty a good few quid. Must be the reason why he’s willing to spread bet on young foreign players but not invest in quality.

      • HarryHype59

        I would argue the market has changed since the club signed those two. All EPL clubs are swimming in EPL TV cash so the “bargains” start at £15m. Below that, the players won’t be good enough.

  • SuperDesHamilton

    I keep forgetting about him. This might be the year Genoa finally drop with players like Lazaar. They’ve only stayed up last 2/3 seasons by virtue of the promoted clubs being utterly terrible

    • Pretty true that. I follow Serie A as well, and on top of that, whichever club Lazaar went in Italy got relegated :D Maybe Genoa want to make sure they go down this year :D

      • SuperDesHamilton

        Laxalt was probably the only player that played well for them last season, they were Lucky again with Crotone being Crotone & Diabate joining Benevento 6 months too late. Think it’ll be arrividuci for them this season. Parma have strengthened at least

  • We must insist as there is no other way to sell these players.
    I bet Saivet’s Bursaspor contract is the same. More like if he makes 15+ starting appearances or scores 5 goals or something they have to make it permanent for FREE, just pay his wages :D

  • Mrkgw

    We really do need to keep the players that we have given the speed at which the shelves are emptying and the reluctance to re-stock.