A fresh report has linked Newcastle United with 22-year-old Vitesse Arnhem defender Danilho Doekhi.
Football Insider reported in April that Newcastle were in the race for the Dutch centre-back.
And now native publication De Telegraaf have named the Magpies as an interested party in their print edition (via Sport Witness).
They could face competition from relegation rivals Fulham and newly-promoted Norwich City. The report also identifies Atalanta and Rangers as possible suitors.
Newcastle target Doekhi profiled
The Dutch Under-21 international has played all but two of Vitesse’s Eredivisie matches this season.
They sit fourth in the table, having conceded just 29 goals – the second-best record in the division behind champions Ajax.
Doekhi also helped Vitesse progress to the final of the KNVB cup, where they were beaten 2-1 by de Godenzonen.
The 6 foot 2 defender has averaged 2.1 tackles, 1.7 interceptions, three clearances and three successful aerial duels per 90 minutes this season (via WhoScored) – that is more tackles and interceptions than any Magpies player not named Isaac Hayden.
Manager Thomas Letsch has hailed him as ‘one of the best centre-backs’ in the league, adding that Doekhi ‘makes almost no mistakes’ and is a ‘very calm player’, who ‘coaches other players very well’.
Doekhi could be available for small fee
Despite his promise, Doekhi is valued at just £1.8million by Transfermarkt.
That’s partly down to the fact he’s only got one year left on his contract at Vitesse.
A bidding war could drive the price up, but Newcastle may still be set for a bargain deal due to his contract situation.
Transfer Tavern verdict
This could be an excellent piece of business for Newcastle – Doekhi’s numbers are impressive, and based on his manager’s appraisal, he has exactly the right temperament to keep his head in the fast-paced and often frantic Premier League.
For a small fee, the Toon could secure a long-term replacement for out-of-contract Federico Fernandez, who is 32 and will need to pass the torch sooner rather than later.
In other news, read the latest on Fernandez’s future.
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