Newcastle United £21m transfer target due on Tyneside this week

Newcastle United will get a closer look at Atalanta striker Duvan Zapata this week.

The 31-year-old Colombian has been linked with a move to Newcastle since January as Eddie Howe eyes attacking reinforcements.

Since joining Atalanta in 2018, Zapata has scored 79 goals in 162 appearances in all competitions including 13 in 32 last season.

Now the Italian side are reportedly willing to sell the 6ft 2in frontman this summer with Italian newspaper L’Eco Di Bergamo claiming an asking price of €25million (£21.2million) has been set.

Duvan Zapata of Atalanta BC looks on during the Serie A match between Atalanta BC and Torino FC at Gewiss Stadium on April 27, 2022 in Bergamo, Italy. (Photo by Emilio Andreoli/Getty Images)

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With Atalanta not competing in Europe next season, Zapata could be tempted to explore options elsewhere. But he remains involved in Atalanta’s first-team plans as it stands as he played 75 minutes in a 4-0 win over Serie B side Como on Saturday, grabbing an assist for new signing Ederson.

There are question marks as to whether Zapata will be a suitable fit at Newcastle given his age and how adaptable he will be to the club’s style of play.

But Newcastle head coach Eddie Howe will be able to assess Zapata in person later this week as the player is expected to travel with the Atalanta squad to face United in the first of two pre-season friendly matches at St James’s Park.

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The match will take place on Friday, July 29 (7:45pm kick-off) with Newcastle then facing Athletic Bilbao less than 24 hours later with a different side (3pm kick-off).

One week after that, Newcastle will kick-off their Premier League campaign at home to Nottingham Forest.