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Newcastle: Dan Ashworth eyeing Ivan Fresneda swoop

Newcastle United are reportedly interested in signing Real Valladolid sensation, Ivan Fresneda, with sporting director Dan Ashworth currently plotting potential new recruits ahead of the January transfer window.

What’s the word?

According to Radio Marca Valladolid (via El Desmarque), the Magpies are said to be ‘serious’ about securing a deal for the 18-year-old, as they look to win the race amid hefty rival interest in the promising defender.

The report suggests that the right-back – whose existing deal is set to run until 2025 – has a release clause worth in the region of €30m (£26m), albeit with the Tynesiders set to submit a far lower offer than that price.

The piece adds that Ashworth and co could be ‘willing’ to fork out a fee of around €10-15m (£9-13m) in the New Year, with the potential for the teenager to remain with the La Liga outfit on loan for the remainder of the campaign.

An ideal Trippier heir

A long-term heir for current star Kieran Trippier has seemingly been on the agenda for Ashworth ahead of the market re-opening next month, with the likes of Harrison Ashby and Cody Drameh having been named as possible targets.

That duo have, however, been unable to establish themselves at first-team level for their respective clubs, with Ashby making just two senior appearances for West Ham United this season, while Drameh has featured just twice under Jesse Marsch this term for Leeds United.

Fresneda, by contrast, may still be in his teens although he is already flourishing for his current side, having made seven appearances in all competitions in the early months of the campaign, including six outings in Spain’s top-flight.

Much like Trippier – who has been lauded for his “incredible” delivery by the Chronicle’s Matty Hewitt – the young Spaniard is also a real threat from his wide berth, having been praised for his “beastly ability to take measured crosses” by journalist Juan Arroita.

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The pair are also alike with regards to their defensive quality, with the England international averaging 1.3 interceptions and 1.9 tackles per game in the Premier League this season, while Fresneda averages 1.3 and 2.5 for the same metrics, albeit while having featured this frequently.

The indications are that the latter man could well be a suitable fit to eventually replace the 32-year-old in Eddie Howe’s side in the future, with having such a young and hungry asset waiting in the wings like to be a real benefit for both Trippier and Newcastle.