Having received confirmation that he won’t have to spend his summer hawking CV’s around would-be employers, Newcastle manager Alan Pardew has started to make inroads into the transfer market.
Bringing players in has proved a troublesome task for the Magpies recruitment hotshots of late, but they’re hoping that Saido Berahino’s new-found loathing of wage-payers West Brom will be enough to convince him to pledge allegiance to their barcode-striped flag.
The England Under-21 international has fallen out of love with the Baggies following a dressing room bust up with teammate, not singer, James Morrison, who allegedly tossed the young gun a haymaker.
Berahino is understandably unhappy with that and is reportedly equally displeased with how the club handled the situation.
The Toon could be the team to capitalise on this disharmony and with strengthening both their attack and British core top priorities this summer, the Burundi-born hitman could be subject of a bid from the north-east club.
So impressive was his breakthrough Premier League campaign that Arsenal, Chelsea and Everton have all been keeping tabs on him, but it looks as though the Tynesiders will make the first move.
In 11 starts for the struggling Baggies last season he feasted on a hat-tip warranting five goals from just a 1.8 shot-per-game average.
An accurate marksman, Berahino also packs plenty of pace and, as a result, can be equally effective playing on either wing as he can through the middle, an asset that would serve a smaller squad like Newcastle’s well.
Loic Remy, the sole Toon striker to emerge from 2013/14 without deflating his stock any and 100/1 shot to be World Cup top scorer, is surely not going to remain at St James’ Park beyond the length of his season-long loan spell, meaning their wafer-thin frontline is in for further shearing in the coming weeks.
A hefty outlay on Berahino would help solve this crisis, as the youngster shares several qualities with the absconding Frenchman.
Similarly, a move to Newcastle, not one of the big-gun alternatives allegedly seeking his services, would be of greater benefit to the player, for the gaping hole in their attack would almost guarantee him access to unbounded amounts of first-team football next term.