Stoke City are lining up a ‘club record bid’ of £20m for Newcastle United striker Dwight Gayle, according to the Sun.
Stoke finished down in 17th in the Championship last season, with them struggling badly in their first season after relegation, and it’s claimed they’re now looking to land Gayle in a bid to fire themselves back to the Premier League.
It’s easy to see why they’d want him. He scored 24 goals in 34 starts during a loan spell at West Brom last season and is prolific in the second tier, not forgetting the fact no player in Nathan Jones’ Stoke side scores more than 8 times across 2018/19.
Gayle is clearly in-demand, with Norwich, West Brom, Fulham, Middlesbrough and Aston Villa having all been linked over the past month, but I have my doubts about any potential move to Stoke..
Yes Stoke will be desperate to sign a goalscorer to fire them out of the Championship, but it’s been reported earlier this summer that they’ll have to manage their finances after failing to bounce back immediately. With that in mind, is a £20m bid really that likely in their position?
It’s also worth nothing that an asking price of around £10-15m has been touted for Gayle in recent weeks. An initial £20m valuation was reported by the Evening Standard in May, but the Chronicle have reported more recently that Newcastle would be looking for around £15m max for the 28-year-old.
And last but not least, is Gayle actually likely to want a move to Stoke? It’s been reported that he wants to test himself in the top flight again after well and truly proving himself in the second tier. It wouldn’t surprise me if he did end up in the Championship again next season, but I’d imagine a promotion-chasing / big spending club like Fulham seem more likely to convince him than Stoke – a side who finished 17th last season.
Stoke fans will be hoping this latest rumour is true (as will NUFC fans if it means we’d get £20m!), but this seems dubious at best from the Sun for me.