Newcastle make approach for Brazilian winger putting Barcelona misery behind him in best goalscoring season
Newcastle United have made their interest known in a winger who failed to make the grade at Barcelona but is finally reviving his fortunes this season, according to a report.
Currently third in the Premier League table, Newcastle are exceeding expectations this season. Many thought the Saudi-backed club could progress from last season’s 11th-place finish. But they seem to be ahead of schedule in terms of just how high they are aiming.
With a carefully constructed squad, Eddie Howe has been achieving some positive results. The Newcastle project will be a continually evolving one under their current owners, though.
Therefore, Newcastle will always be on alert to potential opportunities to strengthen their squad. One area they are currently focusing on, for a couple of reasons, is their attack.
First, Chris Wood recently left the club after just 12 months to join Nottingham Forest on loan. Due to the conditions of the deal, it is likely that the New Zealand international has played his last game for Newcastle.
In addition, winger Allan Saint-Maximin has been attracting interest from Serie A champions AC Milan.
Besides, Newcastle’s main strength this season has been their defensive record. If they can improve at the other end of the pitch, they could become a seriously strong team.
Therefore, Newcastle are now being linked with an in-form winger whose arrival could represent the next phase of their evolution.
Former Barcelona flop becomes Magpies target
According to Foot Mercato, the Magpies have approached officials of Zenit St Petersburg to ask about their attacker Malcom.
The Brazilian star was once the subject of a big-money move from Bordeaux to Barcelona. However, he only lasted one season (2018-19) at Camp Nou after only managing to score once in La Liga.
Zenit signed him in 2019, but have had to be patient for him to deliver. He scored four goals in all competitions in his injury-hit debut season, three in his second, and a more promising nine in his third.
This time around, Malcom has been in better form than he ever was even when making his name at Corinthians and then Bordeaux. From 23 appearances for Zenit in 2022-23, he has scored 15 goals and provided seven assists.
Never before has he found the net so many times in a single season. The number 10 is certainly repaying his club’s faith after they extended his contract to 2027 last summer.
But they may soon be faced with a decision on whether to cash in on him earlier. Per Foot Mercato, Newcastle have asked them about Malcom’s availability.
As a left-footed winger who mainly plays on the right, he would be the opposite kind of profile to Saint-Maximin. Hence, they could theoretically line up in the same side, although that could then pose a problem for the in-form Miguel Almiron.
Newcastle face French competition for Malcom transfer
Still, Newcastle are clearly considering a move for Malcom. If they do want him, though, they will have to fend off competition from another financial powerhouse, Paris Saint-Germain.
There have been a few claims about Malcom being offered to the French champions. The report from Foot Mercato verifies the link, going on to explain why PSG might find him interesting.
First and foremost, they need to find a replacement for Pablo Sarabia, who recently joined Wolves. Thus, if they choose Malcom, they would be acquiring a player who already has Ligue 1 experience.
Alternatively, perhaps the 25-year-old could give thought to taking on a new challenge in the Premier League.
Newcastle must decide what kind of role they would have for Malcom if he was to join. They have been careful in how they have built their squad since the takeover, so won’t want to disrupt things too much.
As things stand, Almiron seems to be doing well enough, so perhaps this shouldn’t be so much of a priority on Tyneside.
But Howe has admitted that they are looking for a different kind of player to Wood when it comes to replenishing their depth in attack. Hence, there might be room for another goal-getting wide forward.
And Malcom has been finding his rhythm in front of goal this season, so will be one to keep an eye on if the price is right.
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