To be quite frank, it is easy to see why things went so wrong for Florian Thauvin during his time at Newcastle United, but knowing that does little to ease the pain for fans who have endured the painful process of watching their former man blossom into one of France’s most accomplished players.
It is often the case with a budding talent that their big time move comes too soon in their career, and French ace Florian Thauvin is fully aware that he may fall into that category.
Discussing his ill-fated period in England, the former Newcastle United man admitted to uefa.com: “The league is completely different. It’s far more physical,”
“There’s a lot more contact. You need to be ready, you have to put on muscle before going to the Premier League.
“It was too early for me. It’s a transfer that happened quickly. Normally, you take your time, you think about it, but for me it all happened too quickly after Marcelo Bielsa’s departure.
“I was young, I was 22. At 22, you leave your country, you discover a new culture, a new language, a new league, the food isn’t the same. It’s complicated, but they’re things that help you grow up”.
Yes, this generic excuse rings true in some cases.
Forgotten teenage prodigies, such as Martin Odegaard, will likely be spewing the same rhetoric in years to come about the time they ‘nearly made it’ had it not been for their premature burnout.
But not Florian Thauvin; at 22-years-of-age the Newcastle flop was a man; he knew full well of the challenges of the Premier League, and in his own naïve stupidity failed to prepare properly.
Maybe we are being a little cynical.
Thauvin was after all under charge of one of the worst managers currently operating in the beautiful game, Steven McClaren, who acquired his services from Marseille for a modest £12m in 2015 (Chronical Live).
From our perspective, the former England boss, affectionately known as the ‘wally with the brolly’, is a calamitous mess whose greatest contribution to fans is the unparalleled joy he brings when he is inevitably sacked.
(Indeed, Newcastle fans will likely always remember 11th March 2016 as one of the greatest days in their recent history.)
Something they will be keen on forgetting, however, is just how well their former flop is doing.
The winger – now valued at an impressive £45m by Transfermarkt – has bagged 13 league goals in 24 appearances this season, building on an already impressive record post-Newcastle, and has since worked his way into World Cup winning French national side.
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