In Focus: Michy Batshuayi could prove to be the difference for Newcastle

According to reports in The Mirror, Newcastle United manager Rafa Benitez is hoping to sign out-of-favour Chelsea striker Michy Batshuayi on loan this summer.

What’s the word, then?

Well, Benitez is keen to significantly strengthen his squad following their immediate return to the Premier League as he doesn’t want his side to be involved in another relegation battle next season.

One of the areas he is looking for new players in is in attack, and he believes Batshuayi could be a good addition to his frontline after a disappointing campaign for the Belgian, although he could face competition from West Ham United.

Why was it disappointing?

Despite costing £33m when he moved to Stamford Bridge from Marseille last summer, the 23-year-old has played just 235 minutes of Premier League football this season as he has often found himself playing second fiddle to Diego Costa.

Although his playing time has been limited, the Belgium international has shown his potential by scoring four goals in the final three league matches of the campaign, including the title-winning one against West Bromwich Albion earlier this month.

Does he have a Chelsea future?

It’s difficult to say.

Costa continues to be linked with a move to China and if the Spaniard does go, it would improve Batshuayi’s first team chances under Antonio Conte.

However, the Blues are also said to be interested in the likes of Romelu Lukaku and Alvaro Morata and if they are – and Costa stays – the Belgian will find himself further down the pecking order next term.

A loan move away seems likely, but it could easily be a permanent one if the deal is right.

What would he bring to Newcastle?

He would bring goals, and they can be vital to a team being a success in the Premier League – just ask Middlesbrough.

Even though he has struggled for game time, Batshuayi has still averaged a top flight goal every 47 minutes this season and came to England with a prolific record for Marseille.

What’s the verdict, then?

Well, the Belgian would bring the finishing ability and movement that Newcastle need to give themselves the best chance of competing in the Premier League next season, and it is a no-brainer for Benitez to push as hard as he can to get the deal done.