Alan Shearer urges longterm contract for Sebastien Bassong
Bassong, 22, a graduate of the celebrated Clairefontaine academy, joined Newcastle on a three-year deal from Metz last summer in a £500,000 transfer, and Shearer is pleased he has already attracted Arsenal's attention after a series of impressive displays. "If what we want to happen happens, by staying in the Premier League, my advice would be to get him on a long-term contract, without a doubt," Shearer said of a player now rated in the £8-million bracket. Related ArticlesShearer left seethingOwen will not retire at end of seasonShearer: Career in picsAlan Shearer urges Mark Viduka to fight for NewcastleAlan Shearer to shuffle pack at NewcastleMike Ashley must not repeat Kevin Keegan mistakes with Alan Shearer"He's a big player. He's had a very good season. We need to keep and get the best players here at Newcastle, and he is without doubt one of them. He'll have a big future in the game, I'm sure of that, so there's no surprise that he's been linked with one or two other clubs because of his performances here. He's played really well and he's a very good lad as well." Shearer, whose own long-term future will be sorted out in the summer, will be banking on Bassong and Steven Taylor to provide the platform for a prosperous future in central defence, suggesting Fabricio Coloccini will be allowed to leave a year after a £10-million move from Deportivo La Coruna. "There's two young guys there who are very good players," Shearer said. "Given the right guidance and direction they can both have huge futures in the game. "They have also got Habib Beye alongside them, who gives them that vast experience and who has also had a great season in difficult circumstances. With those in there you give yourself a solid foundation." Shearer has also earmarked Taylor, the England Under-21 skipper, as captaincy material. "Is Steven a future captain? Yeah, and Steven will tell you he's still got a long way to go," he said "But the good thing about him is that he wants to improve, to be coached and wants to turn himself into a better player. If he does things right then he'll have a huge future in the game."
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