Moses Simon is one of the main attacking targets Newcastle United will be focusing on in the summer, according to reports from his home country.
Newcastle’s new owners gave a sign of things to come in January by making five new signings. Kieran Trippier, Dan Burn and Matt Targett strengthened their defence, while Bruno Guimaraes came into their midfield and Chris Wood was added up front.
The spending is only likely to continue when the transfer market becomes open again in the summer. Whether in the Premier League or the Championship by that point, Newcastle will be drawing up plans already.
Their ideal scenario, obviously, is to secure top-flight status and use it to convince more ambitious targets. Among their plans will be to add another goalscorer alongside Wood.
Now, OwnGoalNigeria have revealed that Moses Simon is someone on their transfer radar. He is currently playing for FC Nantes in Ligue 1.
This season, he has scored twice and added six assists from 19 league appearances. His main position is on the left wing, but he can adapt across the attack.
Simon played for Nigeria at the Africa Cup of Nations in January. He scored and assisted once each, making three starts and one substitute appearance.
Newcastle made the right signings for their cause
Newcastle made the right signings to help them in their fight for this season.
Now he is back in Europe, returning his focus to his club duties. But he could be on the move again in the summer – this time to the Premier League.
Simon has already confirmed Leeds made an approach for him late in the winter transfer window. The report confirms they remain interested, but now face strong competition from Newcastle.
Nantes are more likely to sell in the summer and OwnGoalNigeria believe they will be asking for £20m. Newcastle can afford that sum, as well as to tempt Simon with wages worth £100,000 per week.
Therefore, they are currently said to be “locked in talks” with Nantes over a transfer for the 26-year-old. He has become their “prime target”.
Moses Simon transfer battle not the only one between Newcastle and Leeds
Incidentally, both Newcastle and Leeds have also been linked with a transfer for another African ace – who already has Premier League experience. They have shown an interest in Arsenal’s Mohamed Elneny.
The Egyptian midfielder becomes a free agent at the end of the season and appears highly likely to leave the Gunners.
Indeed, Elneny is a big earner at Arsenal and, with his deal due to expire in the summer, Mikel Arteta has no desire to extend his stay.
And The Sun claims Leeds were one of three Premier League sides trying to sign Elneny in January.
The Whites, alongside Newcastle and Watford, all sought to prise him away from Arsenal for a nominal fee.
Arsenal, though, were unwilling to sell due to their lack of central midfield options available to Arteta.
However, with Arteta making midfield a priority of his own this summer, Elneny will walk away on a free.
As such, both Leeds and Newcastle will both offer him chances to extend his Premier League stay with summer moves.