According to The Northern Echo, Newcastle have made Eintracht Frankfurt’s Sebastian Haller their number one transfer target in January as they look to stave off the threat of relegation – fellow strugglers Crystal Palace must deny the Magpies the opportunity to smash their transfer record by offering the German side Christian Benteke in a genius player-plus-cash deal.
Well, The Northern Echo have reported that Rafa Benitez and co. are hopeful of bringing the big Frenchman to St James’ Park when the transfer window opens in a bid to bolster their attacking options but, according to Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, it will set them back up to £26m – Mike Ashley’s minimal backing surely won’t allow for such a fee, leaving the door open for Palace.
Having picked up a shock win over champions Manchester City after edging out Leicester in a gritty clash the week before, Palace have had an impressive December and, should they get a result against Chelsea, will surely be deemed unlikely candidates for relegation but only if they can fix one huge problem.
Benteke’s dire performances since an impactful debut season in red and blue has seen him notch just three goals in 35 appearances and the Eagles should sure look to offload a player who is fast becoming an expensive mistake – they can sign a much needed goalscorer and get one of their most costly payees off the books all at once by including the former Liverpool man in a deal for Haller.
The towering striker has been sensational this season – he has struck a formidable partnership with Luka Jovic and bagged 12 goals and 11 assists in 25 appearances for Die Adler (or the Eagles, funnily enough) in all competitions.
Frankfurt are clearly reluctant to let him go and will demand a fee similar to that which Palace signed Benteke for in 2016, but by sending the misfiring target man the other way, Roy Hodgson and co. will surely lessen the resolve as both are of a similar mould – this could also be the fresh start Benteke needs to reignite his career.
The Croydon outfit have no difficulty creating chances as they took a massive 31 shots against Cardiff but none of these attempts found the net and, thus, the score ended 0-0 – a disappointing result after the Etihad heroics.
Haller could be the difference between relegation and survival for the Eagles and they must make the 24-year-old their priority in the new year.
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