Newcastle United are interested in a deal to bring Lucas Digne to St. James’ Park in the January transfer window.
That’s according to a report by The Sun, who claim that Eddie Howe’s side are keeping a very close eye on the situation of the Everton left-back ahead of a potential swoop in the upcoming winter market.
A previous report by the same publication had claimed that it would cost PIF around £25m in order to land the France international next month, while it has also been reported that the Toffees are open to the sale of the 28-year-old in order to fund their own £20m move for Dynamo Kiev left-back, Viyaliy Mykolenko.
While Digne has fallen out of favour under the management of Rafael Benitez at Goodison Park this season, it is undeniable that the Frenchman’s signing would be a rather considerable upgrade on any of Eddie Howe’s current left-back options at St. James’ Park.
Indeed, over his 30 Premier League appearances last season, the £27m-rated defender helped his side keep eight clean sheets, registered seven assists and created a whopping 11 big chances for his teammates, as well as making an average of one interception, 1.6 key passes, 2.1 tackles, 2.4 clearances and winning 60% of his duels per game.
These returns saw the player who Noel Whelan dubbed an “exceptional” talent who can “win games” earn a rather remarkable seasonal SofaScore match rating of 7.13, ranking him as Everton’s second-best performer in the top flight of English football last time out.
As such, exactly why Benitez is believed to be open to the departure of the £119k-per-week man is beyond us, however, considering just how poor both Jamal Lewis – who has been linked with a move away from the Magpies this winter – and Matt Ritchie have been for Newcastle this season, it would appear extremely advisable for Howe to do all he can to take advantage of Digne’s current situation by snapping up the left-back who Eric Di Meco dubbed a “monster” up this January.