Newcastle baulk at midfielder’s huge asking price

Newcastle boss Rafa Benitez is searching for a midfielder, but it looka unlikely to be Andreas Samaris.
Newcastle boss Rafa Benitez is searching for a midfielder, but it looka unlikely to be Andreas Samaris.

Newcastle United have baulked at Andreas Samaris’s £17.5million asking price.

The club is understood to have considered a move for the Benfica midfielder.

But Newcastle will not break the bank to sign the 28-year-old, who has helped the Portuguese club win three league titles.

United manager Rafa Benitez wants to sign a defensive midfielder this summer, and has looked at Liverpool’s Lucas Leiva and Manchester City’s Fernando.

Samaris is also on Newcastle’s summer transfer radar.

The 28-year-old Greece international – who has two years left on his contract at the Estadio da Luz – is reportedly keen on a move to England.

United have also looked at pacy Middlesbrough winger Adama Traore, but the club has not made a move for the 21-year-old, who started his career at Barcelona.

One deal which could finally complete next week is defender Florian Lejeune’s proposed £8.8million switch from Eibar.

Discussions are ongoing between the two clubs.

Meanwhile, Newcastle have confirmed another pre-season friendly.

Benitez’s side will take on FSV Mainz 05 on Saturday, July 29 (4pm local time) at the 34,000-capacity Opel Arena. The fixture is followed by a visit to Wolfsburg on August 2.

Newcastle will also face Hearts (July 14), Preston (July 22) and Bradford City (July 26) in pre-season.