Rafa Benitez has a blunt message for Moussa Sissoko's suitors

Moussa Sissoko
Moussa Sissoko

Rafa Benitez has warned Moussa Sissoko's suitors that they must put their money on the table – sooner rather than later.

The Newcastle United midfielder yesterday pleaded with Real Madrid to bid for him.

Unsettled Sissoko, rated in the £35million-bracket, is desperate to leave St James's Park in the wake of the club's relegation.

But United manager Rafa Benitez has named him in his provisional squad for tomorrow's Championship home game against Huddersfield Town.

Asked about Sissoko's situation, Benitez said: "It's very simple. We talked with him. We said to him 'listen, you know how it's going on, you are our player, the manager is very happy'.

"I rate him really highly. He's a player that I like as a professional and as a player, 'so just try to concentrate and do your job'.

"If someone is coming with the right offer, we will consider and we will analyse the offer.

"If it's not the right offer, we are really pleased to keep him here. He knows he has to concentrate on that.

"He's on the list on the squad for tomorrow, and after we will decide if he's fine or not."

Benitez also warned the clubs circling Sissoko that Newcastle will NOT be prepared to sell him late in this summer's transfer window.

"Every day, it will be more difficult because we are happy with him and we think he's a very good player," said Benitez.

"If someone is waiting to do a deal on August 30 ... no chance, because we don't need to sell.

"We are happy. He's a very good player.

"If someone wants to come, they have to come, and we will decide which is the best solution for the club.

"The priority for us is to be sure he's fine, he's ready, and if we need to use him in the next games, he has to be available.

"If someone wants to come, they have to make the right offer as soon as possible, or it will be impossible."