It’s ‘likely’ that Newcastle United will be offered the chance to sign long-term transfer target Andrea Belotti on a cut-price deal, according to Chronicle Live journalist Lee Ryder.
The 27-year-old has been a prolific striker for Serie A club Torino, scoring 105 goals in 228 appearances and finishing third in the race for the league’s Golden Boot in 2016/17. He’s currently on Euro 2020 duty with semi-finalists Italy as a back-up to favoured centre-forward Ciro Immobile.
Belotti has now entered the final year of his contract at Torino, who will be wary of the risk that he leaves on a free transfer next summer.
Former Torino boss Davide Nicola has labelled him a ‘unique’ forward and a ‘great finisher’.
Ryder says that Newcastle have long ‘kept tabs’ on Belotti, who was ‘scouted before [the] pandemic’.
The 27-year-old’s contract contains an £85m release clause, but Torino are now thought to have slashed their demands to £29m with less than 12 months left on the deal, a 66% reduction in his asking price. [Chronicle Live]
However, Ryder expresses doubt as to whether Newcastle will take up the opportunity to bring him in. With transfer funds in ‘short supply’ and the club shrouded in a ‘veil of uncertainty’, it may not be realistic. [Chronicle Live]
Belotti will surely have no shortage of suitors at that price tag, and a move to a Premier League club could leave Newcastle pondering what might have been.
If this deal had been available 12 months ago, you’d have been urging the club to pounce. However, the £20m addition of the prolific Callum Wilson means that the centre-forward position is no longer a transfer priority, and even if Bruce wanted to play two up top, it would be sensible to use an in-house option for the moment and invest in improving the squad elsewhere.
In other news, could this be when Newcastle learn their arbitration result?
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