Newcastle United have been handed an encouraging transfer update in their quest to sign Reims starlet Hugo Ekitike…
Speaking live on Sky Sports, Dharmesh Sheth revealed: “Talks are still ongoing between the two clubs, and there’s a will to get this deal done. I’m told today of some of the details of the proposed deal. It’s worth around €30m (£25m) – that’s €27m up front with additional add-ons making it around €30m.
“It will be spread over the proposed five-year contract. As it stands, there’s still a small gap over the valuation that Newcastle want to pay and what Reims want. Significantly, the player does want to come to Newcastle. He’s keen to make that move. I’m told that if he was to sign, such is his ability and how highly-rated he is, he would go into the squad for this season.”
While saying Eddie Howe ‘needs’ a largely unproved 19-year-old from Ligue 1 might sound far-fetched, Ekitike could well be the kind of player who provides Newcastle’s attack with a sense of unpredictability heading into the second-half of the Premier League season.
In fact, writing on Twitter, journalist Graeme Bailey dubbed him an “outstanding talent”, and added that he would be a “huge signing for Newcastle if they get it done, many in France believe he could be the next Mbappe.”
Ekitike has scored an impressive eight goals in just 17 Ligue 1 games, while he’s also managed three assists too, showcasing a real ability to be a genuine finisher in and around the box and also be a intricate link-up player too.
While the likes of Chris Wood and Callum Wilson are tried and tested Premier League options who opposition defences will know all about, the X-factor that Ekitike could bring with him could add another exciting string to Newcastle’s attacking bow.
Whether it’s coming off the bench to provide a bit of spark, or catching other teams out by starting him from the off, the talented teenager is something Howe could really do with as he looks to rescue his side from relegation.