Despite claims from the Chronicle that Mikel Merino’s release clause could be as much as £13m, it’s been revealed in Spain today that the midfielder is actually set to join Real Sociedad for €10m – meaning Newcastle look set to receive just £8.5m.
His exit has felt almost inevitable over the past few weeks, and good riddance if he doesn’t want to be here, however I think it’s fair to say that £8.5m is an incredible bargain in this day and age – making me question why we agreed to such a low release clause.
In a world where average Premier League players cost upwards of £15m, it’s a shame to hear that we’ll only be recouping £8.5m for a player of his talent.
As I say, I’ve reluctantly accepted that it’s best for us to cash in on a player whose heart is no longer in it, but we may struggle to replace a player of Merino’s potential if we have just over £8m to play with.
It’s a frustrating one. I’m disappointed in Merino for failing to stick it out at on Tyneside after we gave him his big chance to impress last season, but I’m equally baffled that we agreed to such a low release clause.