Newcastle ‘pull out of’ Ekitike deal over difficult negotiations with young striker’s agent

Date published: Thursday 23rd June 2022 10:56 - Jason Soutar

Newcastle target Huge Ekitike with the Reims fans

Newcastle United have reportedly pulled the plug on their deal to sign Stade Reims’ young forward Hugo Ekitike.

The Magpies had an agreement in place with the French club, as well as the player himself, however, negotiations with the striker’s agent have ‘proved too much to overcome’, as per 90min.

Benefits of the Premier League ‘golden age’ have not been equally shared

His agent was asking for additional fees and payments which has resulted in Newcastle ‘walking away from the deal’.

The Premier League club are still interested in Ekitike, but will now ‘pursue other options’.

A deal could be ‘resurrected’ should the agent have a ‘change of heart’, but as things stand the 20-year-old will not be relocating to Tyneside.

Paris Saint-Germain are now believed to be frontrunners for the youngster’s signature. Reims will not accept anything less than £30m, which is the fee they had agreed with the Geordies.

Ekitike had an impressive 2021/22 campaign, scoring ten goals in 23 Ligue 1 appearances.

He is under contract with Reims until the summer of 2024 and is unlikely to sign a new deal given the level of interest in him.

One player that Newcastle are very likely to get through the door in the coming days is Burnley goalkeeper Nick Pope.

The England international is believed to be having a medical on Thursday ahead of a £10m move from the relegated Clarets.

Pope has made 141 league appearances for the Championship club over the last six seasons.

Martin Dubravka is currently the No. 1 at St James’ Park, but a successful move for Pope would provide stiff competition for the Slovakia international, who was backed up by Karl Darlow and Mark Gillespie last season with Freddie Woodman spending the second half of the campaign on loan at Bournemouth.

Newcastle have already completed a permanent deal for full-back Matt Targett, who enjoyed a successful loan spell in the north east in the second half of last season. He joined in January after his former club, Aston Villa, signed Lucas Digne from Everton.

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