Former Newcastle flop Florian Thauvin is adamant he has progressed as a player since his departure from Tyneside and is now ‘ready’ for the Premier League. The French winger came to Newcastle during the 2015 season for a cool £13m with a hot reputation from his time in France.
Thauvin, who still sits fourth in Newcastle’s all time record transfers at £13m – only behind Michael Owen, Newcastle legend Alan Shearer as well as Georginio Wijnaldum - struggled to find his best form with the Magpies, failing to score in 13 appearances for the club, before being shipped off back to Marseille. However, the winger says this was due to lack of opportunities.
Speaking to Onze Mondial, Thauvin has admitted to questioning 'what he was doing at Newcastle' as he struggled with the move from France to England. "With my girlfriend, we found ourselves alone, and then we looked at each other and said, 'What are we doing here? They clearly never gave me a chance over there.
"I arrived, I played two or three games as a starter, and then, in the fourth, our striker gets sent off and I end up up front against Arsenal. I don’t play there and there’s no miracle. Then, I never played again.”
Despite his Tyneside struggles - including suffering relegation the season he joined, Thauvin can still take a positive when moving forward in his career.
“It helped me [the experience]. You know, there’s a silver lining to everything. It helped me grow."
When questioned wether he may still not be ready for life in the Premier League, Thauvin said: “That’s completely false. I’ve changed, I’ve grown, I’ve matured. I know myself more and I’ve progressed. Today, I know that I’m capable of imposing myself in England”.
This maturity can be seen since his return to Ligue 1, as he has performed excellently - scoring 44 goals in 77 games. Testament to how well Thauvin has been playing since his return to Marseille, was shown during the summer, as he was selected as part of the winning French World Cup squad.