Newcastle move in with first Pepe bid, as Porto offer transfer discount despite rejection

Pepe, Anthony Lopez, Lyon v Porto March 2022

Newcastle have had a first bid rejected for Pepe, but Porto have signalled their willingness to sell the Brazilian winger according to a report.

Following three defensive signings to start the summer transfer window off, the Magpies now want to bolster their attack. A new striker and a wide attacker are manager Eddie Howe’s top priorities up front.

Newcastle have registered tentative interest in Leeds United winger Raphinha, with Arsenal closer to the 25-year-old at this point.

However, Newcastle have elsewhere locked in their interest in Raphinha’s fellow Brazilian Pepe.

Previous reports revealed that a Magpies bid was forthcoming for the winger, also 25.

And Globo Esporte reports that €35million (£30million) is the sum Newcastle have offered for Pepe.

Porto have immediately rejected the offer, instead referring to the player’s exit clause. The report claims that Pepe’s release clause is €70million after earlier suggestions of €60million.

Nevertheless, €60million (£51.8million) is where Porto have said Newcastle must at least get to with their offer.

In the meantime, the two clubs will continue to negotiate for Pepe, who looks an exciting prospect.

The winger picked up the baton for Porto in January after Luis Diaz’s move to Liverpool. From that point, he notched two goals and four assists to help finish off his side’s impressive league-winning campaign.

That run of form has seen Pepe’s stock rise significantly, especially as it was his debut season at his current employers.

The versatile forward, who can also play in either wing-back role, has four years left on his contract and could yet enjoy the best years of his career in the Premier League.

Pepe an ideal Newcastle addition

Pepe, Neto Borges Porto v Tondela May 2022

Newcastle rightly focused on their defence in the January transfer window to shore up their ranks.

They were deep in relegation trouble, but the likes of Kieran Trippier, Dan Burn and Matt Targett all helped to get the club out of trouble.

And Lille centre-back Sven Botman will look to add further security to the back line and cement Newcastle’s progress.

However, Howe’s side need more goals if they are to break into the top 10 and beyond. They scored 44 times in the Premier League last season, the 12th best record in the division.

While Crystal Palace, Brentford and Aston Villa below Newcastle scored more, Leicester – who finished eighth last term – struck 62 goals, showing the levels the Magpies want to get to.

Pepe would be a solid addition in helping supply those goals – with assists as well – and at 25, he has time to develop at St James’ Park.