A major Newcastle United transfer claim has emerged regarding the club’s pursuit of Hugo Ekitike heading into the summer transfer window…
The Daily Mail’s Craig Hope has provided an update on the state of play as the Magpies attempt to get a deal over the line for the French centre-forward.
He tweeted: “Newcastle hopeful of sealing Hugo Ekitike signing (structure/fees/terms still being discussed). A loan + obligation to buy was mooted (a way to delay FFP restrictions) but it will be permanent. Deals also still in play for Sven Botman & Matt Targett.”
Hope has since added to his initial claim, tweeting: “Newcastle believe he wants to sign. Last I heard was agent fees were still being negotiated.”
The Magpies head coach will surely be left feeling excited by this news, as he will be keen to get Ekitike to St James’ Park as early as possible.
Howe will want as many signings in the door as the club can manage ahead of pre-season, as it will give him the best chance of integrating them into the team ahead of the first Premier League match of the campaign. Conversely, bringing someone in with only days, or even hours, left in the transfer window will leave them playing catch-up, as Newcastle would already be a few matches into the season.
The Toon boss will also be excited by the prospect of working with the French striker, who has shown great promise in his short career so far. In the 2021/22 Ligue 1 campaign, the youngster managed 10 goals and three assists in 15 starts for Reims, showing that he can make a big impact in the final third on a consistent basis.
As per FBRef, he also ranked in the 99th percentile for interceptions (1.06) and 86th percentile for tackles made (1.2) per 90 in his position in Europe’s top five leagues over the last 365 days. This shows that he works his socks off for the team and is an asset in and out of possession.
He has the quality to make things happen in the penalty box when his team has the ball and he also has the tenacity and work rate to cause the opposition problems when they have possession. Howe will be delighted with this as it will enable him to get his team to press high up the pitch, knowing that he would have Ekitike to put pressure on defenders.