A forgotten Newcastle star has seen his loan spell collapse after his club failed to pay his wages.
Newcastle’s squad has undergone a dramatic transformation since the Public Investment Fund – the sovereign wealth fund of Saudi Arabia – took over the club in 2021.
Stars including Bruno Guimaraes, Alexander Isak and Sandro Tonali have all arrived at St James’ Park, and last season helped the Magpies to return to the UEFA Champions League after two decades away.
The influx of arrivals has inevitably resulted in the departure of several former first-team players from the years leading up to the takeover, one of them being Isaac Hayden.
The Arsenal academy graduate joined Newcastle in 2016, but he fell out of favour when Eddie Howe replaced Steve Bruce as manager in 2021.
After spending last season on loan at Norwich City in the Championship, the midfielder is looking for a new club after his loan spell at Standard Liege collapsed.
Hayden was meant to spend the whole season with the Belgian Pro League side, but Newcastle opted to trigger an automatic recall option in his deal.
According to Hayden, the Standard Liege were not paying his wages on time.
“The main reason why I left Standard Liege is that the club does not pay salaries on time… and does not pay them,” Hayden said, via journalist Sacha Tavolieri.
“I will now initiate legal proceedings against the club to obtain the wages that Standard Liege owes me. For example, I received my November salary…on December 28th.
“They also didn’t pay the players’ bonuses and now the December salaries haven’t been paid and we’re almost at the end of January… It’s a real disaster!”
In response, a Standard Liege spokesperson said: “It would be misleading to claim that the reasons for Isaac’s departure were purely financial, but we wish him well with his future career.”
The non-payment situation should be a warning to Everton. 777 Partners – the American investment fund close to taking over the club who have already invested £142 million – also own Standard Liege.
Earlier this month the Belgian club were hit with a transfer ban over the failure to make payments for two players.
Despite a series of injuries last season costing Hayden a permanent move to Norwich City, the likes of Birmingham City, Blackburn Rovers, Norwich City and Plymouth Argyle are all reportedly interested in taking him on loan.