Tuesday, June 21, 2005
Newcastle to sign Luis Figo?
It emerged at the weekend that the Magpies had spoken to the 32-year-old Real Madrid midfielder and those talks are continuing, although the club had refused to comment on the matter.
However, Souness today told BBC Sport: "There is an interest there as far as Luis Figo is concerned, but we do not want to say any more at the moment.''
The admission comes as no surprise, but it is is also no guarantee that the proposed move will happen.
Figo's wage packet, which is thought to amount to ��100,000 a week, would shatter the club's pay structure, and although there would be no transfer fee to pay despite the fact he has a year left on his contract at the Bernabeu Stadium, that could prove a major obstacle.
The Portuguese international cost Real a then-world record ��37million when he moved from Barcelona five years ago, but following Patrick Kluivert's switch from the Nou Camp under similar circumstances last summer, Newcastle will be extremely careful before committing themselves again.
There is interest in the player outside Tyneside with Liverpool and Bolton among the clubs said to have made approaches and, although the player has admitted that he would like to play in the Barclays Premiership, his chances of doing so might ultimately come down to financial considerations.
The Magpies have already spent ��6.5million on 24-year-old midfielder Scott Parker and agreed to meet a wage bill of around ��60,000 a week, and are talking over a move from Inter Milan's Belozoglu Emre which may require a similar outlay.
In addition they are still in the market for at least one top-class defender and at least one proven striker.