Date: 31st January 2017 at 1:11pm
Written by:

By Harry Sykes

Cheick Tiote is close to ending his lengthy association with Newcastle, according to Rafael Benitez.

The Magpies manager revealed at a media conference on Tuesday afternoon that the veteran midfielder could quit the club on deadline day.

Benitez revealed that the midfield anchorman, who is the Magpies’ longest-serving outfield player, is talking to clubs in the super-rich Chinese league.

Speaking about possible Newcastle transfers before the window shuts on Tuesday night, the Spaniard admitted Tiote could leave.

“Maybe we can get that done and he will go,” said Benitez, as quoted by the personal Twitter account of Chronicle reporter Lee Ryder.

This comes after Tiote’s proposed move to Spanish top-tier side Sporting Gijon, who are battling against relegation, collapsed earlier this month.

Tiote joined Newcastle in the summer of 2010 and has made 155 appearances for the club but he has been a bit-part figure under Benitez and has played just three matches this season.

Two of those games have come in the FA Cup, with Tiote’s league action amounting to just 15 minutes.

Benitez was speaking as Newcastle step up preparations for their Championship fixture against QPR at St James’ Park on Wednesday night.

The promotion hopefuls are second in the table and aiming to maintain the pressure on leaders Brighton, who are two point clear at the top.

In other Newcastle transfer news, the club are set to confirm a 20-year-old midfielder deal.

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