ESPN announced last night that Newcastle United have the option to sign on-loan Chelsea winger, Christian Atsu, for a fee of £6.5m and MUST decide whether to activate the clause within 7 days of the season ending.
The report also claims that personal terms have already been agreed as part of the loan deal, with the ball now firmly in Newcastle’s court according to sources close to the player.
Atsu has shown flashes in his loan spell on Tyneside, with 4 goals and 3 assists this season, however appears to divide opinion amongst fans, with several unsure whether the Ghanian international should be signed permanently.
The 25 year-old was tipped for big things when he joined Chelsea from Porto in the summer of 2013, but has since spent the last four seasons out on loan, failing to ever win a permanent deal following stints with Vitesse, Everton, Bournemouth or Malaga.
The suggested fee of £6.5m is, in this day and age, a relatively low one and with this in mind, I’d be happy for Atsu to sign as a squad player. He appears to be a confidence player and can often go missing in games, but his signing may be necessary given the lack of wingers at the club – especially with Yoann Gouffran likely to leave once his contract expires in the summer.
Even if we did make Atsu’s deal a permanent one, I fully expect Newcastle to sign a first-team left winger this summer, with our reliance on Matt Ritchie from the right often highlighting our lack of balance offensively this season.