According to the Northern Echo, Newcastle are ‘confident’ they’ll receive a £20m fee for Dwight Gayle this summer, with Fulham and Stoke both willing to pay our asking price for the striker.
The report doesn’t mention Gayle’s stance on the move – a player who’s said to want another chance at Premier League level – however he may not get that at Newcastle; especially not if Rafa stays.
He’s as prolific as they come in the Championship so it’s easy to see why several clubs are prepared to pay whatever it takes to sign him, but it remains to be seen if he would accept another move down to the second tier.
Here’s an extract from Paul Fraser’s latest piece for the Echo, suggesting Newcastle have TWO clubs ready to pay good money for Gayle:
‘NEWCASTLE UNITED are confident they will get the £20m asking price for striker Dwight Gayle, regardless of whether Rafa Benitez stays in charge beyond this month.
‘While the chances of Benitez walking away has increased because of the growing frustration he is said to be feeling at the lack of progress over new contract talks, the Magpies have learned of another club being interested in landing Gayle.
‘Stoke City have now joined Fulham in the race for the former Crystal Palace man, with both Championship clubs willing to give Newcastle what they want for the player.
‘Stoke look best placed at this stage to strike a deal because they are seemingly willing to do the deal regardless of what happens, as they are due a further parachute payment from the Premier League. The Potters also expect to receive a fee of around £30m for goalkeeper Jack Butland this summer.
‘Fulham’s interest in Gayle is well known after it emerged West Brom are unlikely to be in a position to match the asking price, although the Cottagers’ efforts to land him could be determined by the futures of Aleksandar Mitrovic and Stephane Sessegnon.
‘West Brom also want the Newcastle front-man back at The Hawthorns but that rests on Salomon Rondon returning to Tyneside. There remains reluctance in the boardroom at St James’ Park to pay the £16.5m contract clause for a player who turn 30 next season.’
The last paragraph in the piece is frustrating. Even though £20m would seem a VERY good fee to be receiving for a 28-year-old who’s not yet proven in the Premier League, I’d far rather we let Gayle go in a deal that saw Salomon Rondon arrive in the other direction.
That seems our only hope of signing him, with Ashley and co. seeming so reluctant to sign a player approaching his 30’s – despite the fact he proved last season he was anything but past it with, 12 goals, 7 assists and our player of the season award.
I can see him joining Fulham – a side who’ll spend as they look to bounce back quickly – but Stoke hardly seem an attractive proposition after their 17th place finish last season.