Newcastle’s preferred transfer target should Demba Ba leave Tyneside in January.

Having failed to agree a new contract with Ba, Newcastle boss Alan Pardew is not willing to leave his squad short in attack, and Marseille striker Remy is now the frontrunner for a transfer to St James’ Park, The Northern Echo reports.

The French international’s earnings would fit in to the club’s strict wage structure and not cost beyond the sort of figures they are looking to spend.

Although the 25-year-old is valued in excess of £13m, Marseille are willing to lower their asking price if an agreement can be reached over a part-exchange deal.

Magpies winger and fellow Frenchman Gabriel Obertan has been touted as the player to form part of any player-plus-cash deal, meaning that Newcastle would have to pay around £10m for Marseille’s talisman.

Remy has won 17 caps for France and scored 27 times in his 68 appearances since moving from Nice two years ago, but he has fallen out of favour at the Stade Velodrome this season.

In an ideal situation Pardew would successfully convince Ba to sign a new deal at St James’ Park and then focus on investing in other areas, as the Toon’s manager hopes to avoid a repeat of January 2011, when Andy Carroll was sold without being replaced:

“It is a difficult window, but I think we would like to get – definitely – one player in and not lose anybody. It could be that we lose a player, you never know.”