By Harvey Byrne

Newcastle winger Florian Thauvin would prefer a return to Marseille over joining Lazio, according to a report.

Sky Italy journalist Gianluca Di Marzio claims on his website that the 23-year-old attacker has chosen to move back to France after giving the Serie A club a decision on his intentions.

It is said that although a deal has not been completed between the Magpies and the Ligue 1 giants but the Toon flop would prefer to play in France under coach Franck Passi, rather than heading out to Italy.

It was reported on Sunday by Di Marzio that Thuavin had the choice between Lazio, or a return to Marseille where he spent the second half of last season on loan.

Newcastle bought the attacker from Marseille last summer for a fee reported to be £13million with Thauvin signing a five-year deal at the time.

However, the Toon have no issue with letting the winger leave the club after bringing in several new faces including Dwight Gayle and Matt Ritchie in recent weeks.

Rafael Benitez’s squad are preparing for their Championship opener against Fulham on Friday night.

The Magpies are aiming to make their stay in the second division as short as possible and claim automatic promotion back into the Premier League.

In other Newcastle transfer news, the Magpies are on high alert as Manchester United prepare to offload defender Paddy McNair.