Bin Zayed Group takeover latest as Mike Ashley verdict revealed plus Rafa Benitez contract talk
Mike Ashley is preparing for life at Newcastle United next season, despite takeover talk dominating the summer.
According to offthepitch.com’s Martin Hardy, Ashley has plans to replace the Sports Direct signs taken down last week, and remains hopeful manager Rafa Benitez will pen a new deal this summer, despite rumours to the contrary.
Sheikh Khaled and the Bin Zayed Group remain in negotiations to buy the Magpies, but Ashley’s side of the deal continue to urge cuation, with the UAE-based investors yet to show their hand in terms of cold, hard cash.
Meanwhile, on the transfer front United have reportedly scouted Rangers’ Colombian striker Alfredo Morelos this summer.
The Daily Record report United have monitored the fiery frontman, famed for his hot-headedness as much as his goals, over the last few months, among with a whole host of other strikers, including Brazilian Joelinton.
Any striker that comes to the club looks set to have big boots to fill with Salomon Rondon’s release clause unlikely to tempt the United hierarchy into making a move – the Venezualan striker became his nation’s highest scorer over the weekend, netting twice in a 3-0 victory over USA.
And they might also have to cover for top-scorer Ayoze Perez, too, with reports linking the player with a move to Valencia.
Cope Radio claim that Valencia have been in contact with Perez’s agent over a move.
Newcastle face a transfer battle this summer – if they pursue their initial interest in Liverpool winger Harry Wilson.
Wilson is understood to be on Rafa Benitez’s radar this summer – along with Morgan Sanson of Marseille – if the former Real Madrid manager remains in charge at St James’s Park.
Wilson is being eyed by a list of clubs in the UK and on the continent.
Rangers manager Steven Gerrard is understood to be keen, while Leeds United and Aston Villa have also been mentioned with an interest in the 22-year-old, who has made just one appearance for the Anfield outfit.
RB Leipzig, who finished third in the Bundesliga and qualified for the Champions League, are also reportedly keen along with Hoffenheim and Getafe as well as Premier League rivals Wolves, Leicester and Bournemouth.