Newcastle United are attempting to hijack any plans West Ham have to make the signing of Alphonse Areola permanent, according to reports in France.
For the past two seasons, Areola has been on loan in the Premier League from Paris Saint-Germain. First, he enjoyed a stint with Fulham, before spending the most recent campaign elsewhere in London, with West Ham.
His gametime in the 2021-22 campaign was not as high as it had been during his Fulham days. Areola had to settle for a backup role behind Lukasz Fabianski in the West Ham hierarchy.
However, with Fabianski now 37 years old, West Ham are considering their options for the future. They could stick with Areola as his successor, giving him more minutes over time.
But there is rival competition for Areola’s services. TEAMtalk was told in April that Fulham would like him back, although they now appear to be looking at other targets.
Yet a new suitor establishing themselves in the race for Areola is Newcastle United. According to RMC Sport, the Magpies are making their own progress towards a potential deal.
Newcastle are searching for a new number one this summer. Martin Dubravka was their first-choice in the 2021-22 campaign and is of a decent standard, but they could be thinking of an upgrade.
With that in mind, they now appear to be in the running for Areola. He is entering the final year of his contract with PSG, who therefore want to sell him.
West Ham have the priority for Areola, since their option to buy him is active until June 30th. However, Newcastle are watching on in case the Hammers have other ideas.
Newcastle hopes fade for other keeper
The update comes after reports elsewhere cast doubt on their chances of signing other targets.
Last week, it was claimed that Newcastle had dropped out of the race to sign Manchester United backup Dean Henderson, for example.
Another name on their radar has been Diogo Costa, who was Porto’s main goalkeeper in the season just gone.
However, A Bola have since revealed that the 22-year-old is not completely convinced by Newcastle. If he leaves Porto, it will be for an already established European force, such as fellow suitor Barcelona.
What’s more, an asking price of at least €40m (£34.7m) would be off-putting for Newcastle, despite their wealth.
Therefore, Areola could be a likelier option unless West Ham leave them powerless in their pursuit.
Areola would be sensible signing
If Newcastle can prise Areola out of West Ham’s grasp, it would be a useful move for them.
While he has struggled to dislodge Fabianski at the London Stadium, he could have a better chance of usurping Dubravka at St James’ Park.
In fairness, he probably deserved more of a chance at West Ham last season – and could yet get it if he extends his stay with them.
But at Newcastle, he would fit in well. Areola would be an upgrade on what they already have, while not costing a fortune – even though Newcastle could spend one if they wanted.
All eyes will be on what West Ham decide to do with the Frenchman first, though.