Newcastle United have reportedly moved ahead of Juventus in the race to sign FC Barcelona striker Memphis Depay.
The Lowdown: Out of contract
Depay is out of contract at the Camp Nou in the summer, meaning that he can leave on a free transfer at the end of this season.
It also means that he can sign a pre-contract agreement with a foreign club in the January transfer window, or even be signed for a cut price during the winter window.
The Latest: Newcastle move ahead
As per Tutto Juve, there is a big cost involved for the St. James’ Park outfit to potentially sign Depay in January, as even though they could sign him for a cut price, they would also have to cover his whopping €200,000-per-week (£175,000-per-week) wages.
A move to rival suitors Juventus now seems to be ‘cut off’ due to the salary though, meaning that the North East club have moved ahead in the race for his signature.
The Verdict: Sign on pre-contract?
Given the arrival of Alexander Isak from Real Sociedad, the Tynesiders do not desperately need to bring in another striker this season, with Callum Wilson and Chris Wood also in the squad.
However, if they could secure a pre-contract agreement with Depay in January, thus signing him for free next summer, then it would be a smart piece of business.
Gone are the days when he struggled at Manchester United in his first spell in English football, where he managed just seven goals in two years at Old Trafford.
Hailed as a ‘different beast‘ now by Red Devils journalist Samuel Luckhurst, Depay has scored an impressive 189 senior goals in total for club and country combined by the age of 28, and Barca inserted a mammoth €400m (£350m) release clause when they signed him from Lyon, showing how highly they rated him.
Now, with the arrivals of Robert Lewandowski and Raphinha, the Netherlands international has struggled for game time this season, and so a door could be opened for the Magpies to swoop in for his services.
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