Achraf Lazaar breaks silence on his Newcastle future

Achraf Lazaar
Achraf Lazaar

Achraf Lazaar has spoken about his Newcastle United future.

A proposed move to Genoa broke down last week after the two clubs failed to agree the terms of a loan.

The deal fell through on transfer deadline day in Italy and the defender, signed from Palermo two years ago, was told to report back to Newcastle.

Lazaar now hopes to force his way back into manager Rafa Benitez's plans at St James's Park, though he could still leave the club this month.

The 26-year-old told Gazzetta dello Sport: "On Friday morning, Newcastle had authorised me to fly to Italy. I just had to sign the contract.

"Several voices were coming, but, in the evening, the two clubs told me correctly that the deal had faded. And now? I hope to regain my space. I will work hard to get back to the top and be the protagonist. If not, I will look around (for another club).

"Obviously, Italy and Serie A always remain in my heart. Try again with Genoa in January? Why not?

"I know (Genoa manager Davide) Ballardini well. He trained me at Palermo. I wish him a great season."

Lazaar spent last season on loan at Benevento, who were relegated.

"We did not see the real Lazaar," he added. "At Newcastle I played very little and last year at Benevento we were relegated.”

Lazaar is under contract at United until 2021.

Asked about Lazaar's situation after last weekend's goalless draw against Cardiff City, Benitez said: He has to go back to train in Newcastle. We will see. The transfer windows are still open elsewhere.”