According to Sky Italia journalist Luca Marchetti – via Fiorentina News – the Magpies could well be one of the clubs in the running for the 26-year-old’s signature, with the St James’ Park outfit set to have “no problem” splashing the cash on the player.
The transfer insider states that the Serie A side views the former Club Brugge man as “non-transferable”, although it is yet to be seen whether a €40m (£35m) offer would test their resolve in the New Year.
This follows reports earlier this month that named the Tynesiders as one of the potential suitors for the 46-cap machine with sporting director Dan Ashworth clearly watching him closely, albeit with the likes of Liverpool and Chelsea also said to be tracking his progress.
The one-time Feyenoord ace – who is the brother of former Watford forward, Nordin Amrabat – has warranted such hefty interest in his services as a result of what was a breakout tournament in Qatar, having played a vital role as Morocco enjoyed a remarkable surge to the last four.
Dubbed the “best centre midfielder in the tournament” by journalist Carlo Garganese, Amrabat was truly influential in what was a stunning run for the Atlas Lions, starting all seven games in the competition.
The impressive “monster” – as also lauded by Garganese – showcased his defensive prowess after averaging 2.3 tackles per game in the tournament, while also leading the way for recoveries made with 57 to his name in total.
Such “extraordinary” form, as per ex-Spain boss Luis Enrique, has certainly put the £33k-per-week gem on the map, although the 6 foot ace has also caught the eye as a result of his form at club level in recent times.
The imposing rock has proven himself more than just a mere defensive shield in front of the back four, with that evidenced by the fact that he ranks in the top 5% in Europe among those in his position for pass completion, as well as in the top 3% for progressive passes.
While making a move for a player off the back of a strong major tournament display is never the wisest approach, Amrabat’s impact in Florence in recent times has helped to further illustrate just what a talent he is, with the hope being that he could replicate such ‘extraordinary’ form at St James’ Park if Ashworth seals the deal in January.