By Paul Blakeman

Newcastle United midfielder Henri Saivet was not given a squad number this year and is close to accepting a contract with Turkish side Bursaspor, according to Olay Gazetesi.

A final meeting is expected be held between the player and the club and he is expected to join the Green Crocodiles on a one-year contract.

Frozen out by Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez, he made just one league appearance in the 2017/18 season – when he scored in a 3-2 win away at West Ham United.

Saivet was left out of the Magpies squad following this and was sent out on loan to fellow Super Lig club Sivasspor, playing under current Bursaspor coach Samet Aybaba, in February.

Analysing his time at St James’ Park is rather difficult.

Newcastle fans seemed at a loss as to why Saivet was not featuring throughout his tenure, especially following his remarkable equaliser at the London Stadium.

However, since being brought in for around £5.4million from Bordeaux in the January 2016 transfer window, he has made just five league appearances for the Magpies and has been sent out on loan twice.

The Newcastle coach will be hoping to make room in United’s wage budget by offloading the Senegal international’s reported £35,000-a-week salary and if he is to move to Turkey it is likely a significant pay cut would be required.

Newcastle started the season with a home loss against title challengers Tottenham Hotspur and are hoping for their first points of the campaign when they travel to Premier League new boys Cardiff City on Saturday.

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