With the advent of yet another Premier League season just days away, newly promoted Newcastle United have a lot to accomplish before transfer deadline day. Manager Rafa Benitez would surely be disappointed by the lack of funds and transfer dealings despite being promised ‘every last penny’ by owner Mike Ashley earlier in the summer. The Magpies are understood to have been frustrated in the inflated transfer market but they must act swiftly in the upcoming days if they are to harness realistic ambitions in the Premier League after their promotion from the Championship.
A goal-scoring forward is a must buy given uncertain futures of Siem De Jong and Aleksandar Mitrovic. Emmanuel Riviere, too, is expected to leave the club while Daryl Murphy’s departure to Nottingham Forest which means Dwight Gayle is only one option Benitez has up front. The 27-year-old Englishman though suffered an injury scare this week but could fit to face Tottenham Hotspur for the Toons’ opening encounter this coming Sunday. While Spaniard Ayoze Perez can fit in at the number 9 slot, Newcastle are in the market for a goal-scoring forward who can time and again find the net.
Here are three strikers the Tyneside club could target before deadline day.
Lucas Perez: The Spaniard is deemed surplus to requirements at Arsenal after having arrived last summer from La Liga side Deportivo La Coruna. Perez has been left disappointed after his number 9 shirt was given to club record signing Alexandre Lacazette at the Emirates. Perez joined Arsenal in a £17.5 deal but has fallen the pecking order at the London side behind Danny Welbeck, Olivier Giroud and Alexis Sanchez. With Lacazette’s arrival, Perez’s time at the Gunners is virtually up. Earlier this week Benitez publicly voiced his liking for the player but the Gunners are staying firm in their £13.5m valuation of the 28-year-old.
Spanish outlet La Galicia have reported that Newcastle are leading the chase for the player’s signature while Turkish side Fenerbache are also interested in the Spaniard. Benitez knows he has to sell in order to buy thus his backroom staff must act quickly to sign Perez who despite scoring 7 goals in 21 appearances could be a real asset at the Sports Direct Arena.
Joselu: Another Spaniard Newcastle have been heavily linked has been Stoke City forward Joselu, who has so far failed to live up to the expectations in the Premier League. There have been reports that Newcastle’s initial offer for the player was termed ‘derisory’ by Stoke, which would surely make Benitez furious with days remaining before the start of a treacherous campaign.
Stoke’s claim really comes as a surprise for a player who scored just 4 goals in 2015/16 season for the Potters and then hitting the back of the net 5 times for Deportivo La Coruna on loan last season. Stoke, it is believed, to be looking near a £12m figure for the Spaniard to part ways from the Bet 365 Stadium.
Angel Correa: Regarded as one of the top upcoming talents in the La Liga, Newcastle have also been linked with the 22-year-old Argentine. The South American scored 4 goals last season having impressed with his flashes of brilliance in the 10 starts he was handed by manager Diego Simeone.
Atletico might want to send the player out on loan to get him enough game time and develop his potential before leading the line on his own. Moreover, having Benitez at the helm could also convince the player to join the Magpies for a season and playing in England, Correa could display his talent to the football fraternity who once termed him as the next Lionel Messi. Should Rafa pull off the deal, expect Correa to send the pulses high at Tyneside.