Newcastle make £60m Prem star ‘number one January target’; prepare ‘formal’ £30m bid for wonderkid

Lewis Oldham
Newcastle target Maddison

Newcastle United have reportedly made Leicester City standout James Maddison their ‘number one target’ ahead of the January transfer window.

Maddison was one of the players Newcastle targeted during the summer. They reportedly had two bids rejected for the Englishman.

Their second offer was reportedly worth around £45m but the Foxes value him at £60m. His current contract is due to expire in 2024.

One per club: Premier League players stuck after missing out on a move

There is no wonder that clubs are interested in him after he grabbed twelve goals and eight assists in the Premier League last season.

Leicester are having troubles at the moment as they are bottom of the Premier League and winless in six games.

Kasper Schmeichel and Wesley Fofana left the club in the summer and Youri Tielemans was targeted by rivals. The Belgium international is out of contract in 2023 and he is likely to leave the club for free then.

Earlier this week, Arsenal legend Ian Wright stated that he thinks Maddison and Tielemans both “want to leave” Leicester City:

“You look at [Youri] Tielemans, linked and probably wants to leave. Maddison, he wanted to leave – Newcastle,” Wright said.

“It’s about recruitment. They are not signing that player who comes in and has such a massive impact, like [Wesley] Fofana.

“They are not signing a midfield to come through. Hopefully Soumare might be able to do it.

“What’s happened is that the players who are there who can inspire good players who come in, they want to leave.

“So it’s really a catch-22 for them. They’re so close but it’s not happening so they’re like I can leave now.”

The Magpies spent significant fees to sign Alexander Isak and Sven Botman and they have enjoyed a steady start to the new campaign.

The Northern Echo are now reporting that Newcastle will go back in for Maddison in January.

They state that the midfielder has been identified as their ‘number one January target’ ahead of the window opening in just under four months.

The Newcastle hierarchy are said to be ‘hopeful of being able to prise the England international out of The King Power Stadium’.

The report adds that Eddie Howe’s priority now is to ‘strengthen his attacking-midfield ranks’.

Newcastle also have their eye on other targets, though. A separate report from GOAL (via Sport Witness) has revealed that they will make a ‘formal offer’ for Brazil youngster Andrey Santos ‘in the next few days’.

This offer is said to be worth around €35m (£30m). This proposal for the 18-year-old is due to be ‘discussed’.

The report notes that his club – Vasco – have already turned down offers and ‘their stance should not change’. It is also stated that Santos’ current contract includes a €50m (£43m) release clause.