Newcastle United's attempt to sign Lille midfielder Thiago Maia have been rejected, according to reports in France.
Newcastle were looking to sign Maia on loan, with an option for the Brazilian to make the move to the north east permanent. Maia signed for Lille from Brazilian side Santos for £12m last summer, and has impressed for the French club in his 37 appearances for the side.
Maia only signed for Lille in July of 2017, but reports from Le10Sport state that Lille would prefer to sell the 21-year-old outright in order to make a quick profit. Newcastle on the other hand would prefer to have him on loan to see if he is up to the task of Premier League football.
Maia is yet to play for the Brazilian national team, but was part of their Olympic squad in 2016.
Maia played alongside Neymar and Gabriel Jesus, as Brazil dispelled the disappointment of the 2014 World Cup to win gold in a penalty shoot-out against Germany.
Rafa Benitez has already strengthened his midfield by signing South Korea midfielder Ki-Sung Yeung from relegated Swansea, but he is clearly intent on making further improvements to the side.
Newcastle are also close to recruiting another Brazilian for their 2018-19 Premier League campaign. Chelsea winger Kenedy impressed in his short-spell on loan at St. James' Park last season, and Newcastle are hopeful of signing the 22-year-old on a full season loan this time around.