Muto is no improvement on Gayle at Newcastle

According to the Daily Mail, Newcastle United are nearing a deal for Mainz forward Yoshinori Muto, who could cost the Magpies in the region of £9m.

What’s the story?

It is not exactly a secret that Newcastle boss Rafael Benitez wants to bring a new centre-forward to the club in this summer’s transfer window.

Salomon Rondon continues to be linked with a move to St James’ Park, although it is understood that the Magpies are struggling to agree a deal with West Bromwich Albion.

According to the Daily Mail, however, the Premier League outfit are close to securing a deal for Mainz forward Muto, who represented Japan at the 2018 World Cup.

The report claims that talks are advancing between the two clubs, and Newcastle are hopeful of securing a £9m swoop for the 26-year-old.

However, Muto’s record suggests that he would not be much of an improvement on Dwight Gayle, who played a lot of football for Newcastle at centre-forward last term.

Would Muto be a good signing?

There is no question that Muto has ability, but he has only scored twice for Japan in 25 caps, and only played 82 minutes of their 2018 World Cup campaign.

A record of 20 goals in 66 Bundesliga appearances for Mainz is not exactly terrible, and he did reach double figures for the German outfit in all competitions last term.

That said, there is an argument to suggest that the attacker lacks the physicality to play in the Premier League, and it is worth remembering the struggles that Shinji Kagawa had during his time at Manchester United.

Like Kagawa, Muto has bundles of ability, but whether he would suit Newcastle’s style of football is another matter entirely.

Newcastle supporters will be looking for a striker who is capable of scoring 15 Premier League goals next season, and Muto does not fall into that category and would 100% be a flop.