Some big claims from France Football tonight, who report that Newcastle United and Rafa Benitez have re-entered into discussions with PSG to sign goalkeeper Alphonse Areola this summer.
The Frenchman is a player we have been linked with over the last two transfer windows, so Rafa appears to be a keen admirer, however I’m struggling to see why we’d pay the alleged €15-20m required to sign a goalkeeper.
Why? Because we have the brilliant Marin Dubravka waiting to be signed for just £4m. There’s a chance Rafa is wanting two new stoppers, with Sels set to be sold and Darlow possibly on his way too, but it seems unlikely to me? There’s surely bigger priorities when it comes to spending what could be a fairly limited budget this summer? (Kenedy and a new striker will cost a huge chunk of it!).
Back to the story, and the report from France Football claims Benitez has already held ‘multiple 1-on-1 discussions’ with the 25-year-old, claiming we’ve now ‘re-opened talks’ after interest in January.
The part of this story NUFC supporters won’t like is the section that claims Benitez has even asked the goalkeeper if he’d join him at a different club if he did not remain at Newcastle this summer..
Rafa Benitez has held multiple 1-on-1 discussions with Alphonse Areola & has even asked him if he would join him at a different club if he does not stay at Newcastle https://t.co/rErQKlW3od
— Get French Football (@GFFN) May 14, 2018
The 25-year-old Frenchman has played 43 games for the Ligue 1 giants this season, so has been a regular, however it’s emerged that new boss Thomas Tuchel’s first priority this summer will be to sign a new number one – paving the way for Areola’s exit.
Here’s a snippet from GFFN on France Football’s latest piece:
”Premier League side Newcastle United have re-entered into discussions with PSG over signing goalkeeper Alphonse Areola, according to France Football.
“The outlet claims that Les Parisiens are prepared to the French international to make way for a new number one this summer, seeking around €20m.
“Rafa Benitez has held several one-on-one discussions with PSG’s current #1, having already held talks for the player in January, with initial contact dating back to Spring 2017.
“During these conversations, Benitez is said to have asked Areola if he would join him not only at Newcastle, but at any other future club that he becomes the manager of, with the Spaniard not certain to stay with the Magpies this summer, owing to the lack of money available for transfers.
“Crystal Palace and Napoli are interested in Areola too, with the Frenchman having recently bought a property in London, a city that his wife adores.”
I’m sure Rafa’s an admirer of his, as explained earlier, he may want to sign Dubravka AND Areola to totally transform our goalkeeping options, but I’m not convinced.
Big claims, but possibly one that doesn’t quite add up? Either way, he’s another one to watch this summer.