According to Spanish outlet El Confidencial, Newcastle are one of several clubs who have been spotted watching Real Betis midfielder Fabian Ruiz this season.
The 21-year-old has been a hit in La Liga this term and is understood to have a release clause €15M (£13m) – meaning he could be a potentially affordable central midfield option for NUFC if we were to firm up our alleged interest.
He has two goals and two assists in 16 appearances from midfield this season and football journalist Harry De Cosemo has suggested that the 6ft 2′ midfielder could be an ideal replacement for Jonjo Shevley if Rafa were to ever cash in:
Fabian has been excellent all season for Betis. Could fit as an alternative for Shelvey, albeit a different type of player; likes to run with the ball more. Has a €15m buyout clause that is well worth paying at 21 y/o. Lots of clubs will be keen at that price. https://t.co/XdOvaklRTF
— Harry De Cosemo (@harrydecosemo) January 25, 2018
The report does however state that the likes of West Ham, Chelsea, Everton and Barcelona have all been keeping tabs on his progress as well. With the likely competition and his relatively cheap buyout clause in mind, this doesn’t look like the sort of race we’d win – however the signing of Mikel Merino in the summer did prove we are capable of signing Spanish U-21 talent.
Here’s him in La Liga action away to Real Madrid this season: