Following a combination of United losing their Premier League status last season, and some eye catching performances for France at Euro 2016 in the summer, the 26-year-old's future has been the subject of intense speculation in recent weeks.
The Frenchman has made no attempt to hide his desire to leave St James' Park, with Crystal Palace, Manchester United, Liverpool and Roma all mentioned as possible destinations.
Real were the latest name to be linked with the midfielder and were even reportedly willing to offer a part-exchange deal for the player, who has been valued at around £35 million by the Magpies.
However, the Champions League winners are now understood to be looking at other targets.
With no move yet on the cards for the French international, he is now facing the prospect of still being on Tyneside come the beginning of the season, which starts with a trip to Fulham on Friday night.
Nevertheless, the Newcastle Chronicle has suggested he is unlikely to be involved at Craven Cottage, and is still determined to quit the club.