Eddie Howe has not completed a signing since bringing in Lille central defender Sven Botman on 1st July and the club are yet to sign an attacking player this summer, with Matt Targett and Nick Pope being the only other additions.
Earlier this year, Newcastle were reportedly interested in a move for Villarreal winger Arnaut Danjuma, and the club could now land a dream alternative to Diaby by reigniting a swoop for the Dutchman.
It has been reported that the 25-year-old has a €75m (£63m) release clause in his contract, although it is impossible to tell – without the Magpies asking the question – whether or not the Spanish outfit would be willing to negotiate a lower fee.
He would be an ideal player to come to St James’ Park instead of Diaby because he has a history with the manager, having been signed by Howe at Bournemouth in 2019.
At the time of joining the current Magpies boss at the Vitality Stadium, Danjuma claimed that the team suited his style of play, which suggests that he has the profile of an attacker that Howe would want.
The Athletic’s Peter Rutzler called him a “wildcard” and he was also dubbed an “exceptional talent” by Clinton Morrison during his time in England. This came as he scored 15 goals and provided seven assists in 29 Championship starts for Bournemouth in 2020/21, which shows that he knows how to perform in England, albeit in the second tier.
He then joined Villarreal and caught the eye in the 2021/22 campaign with strong performances in La Liga and the Champions League.
The Netherlands international scored 10 goals and set up three in 17 league starts, whilst also finding the net six times and supplying one assist in 10 European starts. This means that he was directly involved in 20 goals in 27 starts, compared to Diaby’s 25 goal contributions in 32 starts in the Bundesliga.
Danjuma produced one goal contribution for every 1.35 starts in comparison to the Frenchman’s 1.28, and this suggests that they offer a similar level of productivity in the final third.
Given that the Dutchman is proven to be a player that Howe likes, Newcastle must reignite their interest in the Villarreal man as an alternative to Diaby.