Algerian midfielder Abdelhakim Omrani – said to be starting a trial at Newcastle United with a view to a permanent deal – is understood to have already left for pastures new.

The 20-year-old playmaker had previously been on trial at German giants Bayern Munich where he had impressed, but neither party could agree a deal and Omrani remained at his current side, RC Lens.

The French-born starlet has pledged his international allegiance to Algeria, similar to Newcastle youngster Mehdi Abeid, who also signed from French side RC Lens.

But although the French media have claimed Omrani is currently training with Newcastle, it is thought he has already failed to impress on Tyneside and returned to France.

Their interest in Omrani, though, underlines Newcastle’s willingness to buy abroad, focusing heavily on the French market, where they have built up a big reputation after signing France Internationals Hatem Ben Arfa and Yohan Cabaye.

Manager Alan Pardew has insisted that any player who would join United in the January window would be under the age of 26.

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