According to The Sun, Newcastle are ready to pay West Brom £16.5m to activate the release clause in Venezuelan striker Salomon Rondon’s contract, after the Baggies were relegated to the Championship last season.
The 28-year-old joined the West Midlands club from Zenit St Petersburg in 2015 and has since played 120 times in all competitions.
Losing Rondon could be a big blow for West Brom. He scored 10 goals in all competitions last season and it would leave boss Darren Moore with just Jay Rodriguez and Hal Robson-Kanu as his senior strikers.
But what could actually happen if Rondon does decide to jump ship? Football FanCast take a look at the potential consequences of him leaving the Hawthorns.
Whilst Rondon’s 28 goals in all competitions since joining the Baggies may not seem so difficult to replace, if we look deeper than just the stats then his role in the team will be much more complicated to replicate.
The 6ft 1in unit uses his strength and power to bully centre-backs and is an expert in holding the ball up and allowing his side to get up the pitch. Having a striker that can turn a hasty clearance into a chance for an attack is invaluable and it is easy to see why Newcastle are in for him as this is exactly the sort of player they are lacking.
If Moore does sign a replacement it will be interesting to see whether he changes the way the team play slightly or if he signs a big target man who is given a similar role to Rondon.
Rodriguez signed for West Brom in the summer transfer window last year after struggling with injuries during an otherwise impressive five-year stint with Southampton where, had it not been for a cruciate ligament injury, he looked to be playing himself into England’s 2014 World Cup squad.
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Now 28 years old and with his injury problems seemingly behind him, Rodriguez should be looking to lead the line for the Baggies. If Rondon does leave then the number nine shirt will be up for grabs and, having worn it at both Saints and Burnley, Rodriguez must put his name in the hat to take it over.
Selling Rondon for £16.5m would still represent a tidy profit on the £12m West Brom paid for Rondon three years ago and that money could buy a top Championship player despite the state of the current transfer market.
That money could buy someone such as Derby County’s 21 goal striker Matej Vydra, who Leeds were interested in but a deal seems to be off. Former Hull striker Abel Hernandez is also available on a free transfer and the Rondon money could go towards his wage packet.
If a goalscoring striker was signed to replace Rondon it would certainly ease the disappointment of West Brom fans who will be hoping that the club can bounce straight back up to the Premier League at the first time of asking.
So, West Brom fans, would you cash in on Rondon now or do you think Darren Moore should be doing all he can to keep him at the club?