By Dan King - Newcastle United Club Reporter
Alan Pardew has confirmed that a deal to bring Lille right-back Mathieu Debuchy to Newcastle is getting closer.
The France international was in the crowd for Wednesday night's Barclays Premier League game against Everton and the United manager has revealed that he is now undergoing a medical on Tyneside.
And although the 27-year-old certainly won't be signed in time to play in this weekend's FA Cup with Budweiser third round tie at Brighton and Hove Albion, Pardew hopes to have him on board by the time the Magpies travel to Norwich seven days later.
"He's going through the medical process now and hopefully that all goes to plan," Pardew said. "He's not available for Saturday but hopefully for Norwich, yes.
"It's massively important for our senior players; our senior players who are actually fit and playing have had to see the younger players come in and one or two have struggled, one or two have done well, but they want to see good players around them.
"So it'll be a lift for them in particular - the (Fabricio) Coloccinis, the Tim Kruls, the Perchys, the (Mike) Williamsons who have played most of our games, that there are one or two more senior players in that dressing room."