Besiktas boss Abdullah Avci claimed earlier this week that his side pulled out of a deal to sign Mario Lemina as they did not have sufficient ‘information’ to conclude negotiations.
The midfielder was touted with a move to Istanbul throughout the summer but instead ended up joining another Turkish powerhouse in Galatasaray on the final day of the window.
Lemina has joined the club on loan until the end of the season, and they will have the chance to make his stay permanent next summer if they wish.
While earlier claims from Avci suggested that Besiktas were the ones who pulled the plug on a deal for the Gabonese midfielder, new suggestions from Fotospor indicate that it was the player himself who turned down the chance to join.
This led Besiktas to look elsewhere for alternative options, as they added Arsenal man Mohamed Elneny on loan as a replacement for Gary Medel.
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It seems there was certainly a tug of war in Turkey surrounding a possible deal for Lemina, and whether or not Besiktas are attempting to save face with the suggestion that they were not, in fact, that keen on signing him remains unclear.
Either way, he is probably more suited to Galatasaray than he is to Besiktas, who were in need of a purer defensive midfielder to fill the void left by Medel.
Lemina could make his debut for the Turkish side on Friday night. His new club take on Kasimpasa, and he will be keen to make a positive first impression on the fans.
However, shining on the Champions League stage is likely to be at the top of Lemina’s list of priorities, as he fights to regain form and become a sought-after player once again after his failings at Southampton.