Newcastle transfer round-up: Former Liverpool defender offered, targets discuss their future plus rivals enter midfielder race

Reported transfer targets Kerim Mrabti and Garry Rodrigues have opened up about their futures amid interest from Newcastle United.
Rafa BenitezRafa Benitez
Rafa Benitez

Mrabti, dubbed the 'next Eden Hazard', has confirmed he is keen to leave Swedish outfit Djurgardens this summer.

The 24-year-old's contract is up at the end of the Allsvenskan campaign, which ends later this year, and reports over the weekend suggested United had tabled for the Sweden international.

Martin SkrtelMartin Skrtel
Martin Skrtel
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Speaking to Swedish newspaper Aftonbladet, Mrabti said: "Clearly, I have explained to Bosse Andersson (Djurgardens' sports director) that I have a chance to go abroad now. This is my fourth year here and I feel I’ve done a lot for the club."

Galatasaray's Dutch-born winger Rodrigues has also been talking about where he'd like to play his football next season.

The Cape Verde international wideman has been linked continuously with United over the last three windows.

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But, taking to the media this week, Rodrigues says he is keen to remain in Istanbul, despite interest from across Europe.

He said: "I hear there are many rumours about other clubs’ interest in me.

"I want to stay in Galatasaray. I am very happy here.

"We will play in the Champions League next season and I am totally focused on Galatasaray."

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Fenerbahce defender Martin Skrtel, according to Turkish outlet Fotomac, has reportedly been offered to Newcastle.

The veteran centre-half had looked to set to sign for Rangers, now managed by former Anfield teammate Steven Gerrard, but the finances of the deal appear to be a stumbling block.

And as a result Skrtel's agent has offered him around the continent, as a Fener exit appears likely.

Rafa Benitez signed the Slovakian international for Liverpool back in January 2008.

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Elsewhere, the Magpies will face a four-way fight if they progress with early interest in landing Juventus midfielder Stefano Sturaro.

Real Betis and Villareal, who can both offer Europa League football next term, have reportedly entered the race to sign Sturaro, who is set to be shown the Juve exit door this summer.

Genoa are also said to be keen and are understood to be in pole position, as things stand.