Stephy Mavididi has become the latest attacking talent to be linked with a transfer to Newcastle United – who already have one of his relatives at the club.
Newcastle have kickstarted their first transfer window since their Saudi takeover with two signings. So far, the new owners have helped them bring in full-back Kieran Trippier and striker Chris Wood.
To aid their chances of avoiding relegation, though, they need further reinforcements. Next on the agenda is a centre-back and possibly another striker.
With Wood, they have ensured they have an experienced figurehead up front. There have been rumours they could look for a younger attacker to learn from him as well.
For example, Reims starlet Hugo Ekitike is of interest, despite a significant price tag.
Someone cheaper they could pursue is Stephy Mavididi, a former Arsenal academy product now playing for Montpellier.
The Derby-born ace failed to feature for Arsenal’s first team before leaving for Juventus in 2018. He only played once in Serie A across two seasons, instead turning out mainly for their under-23s in his first year and going on loan to Dijon for his second.
His spell in France brought up eight goals from 28 appearances. As such, he earned a permanent move to Ligue 1 side Montpellier off the back of it.
After scoring nine goals from 40 games in his debut season there, he has six from 19 this time around. Consequently, links with a return to his country of birth have surfaced.
Newcastle in three-way Stephy Mavididi battle
According to the Daily Mail, Newcastle are now interested in signing Stephy Mavididi. They are one of three clubs considering a move for him this month, the others being Brighton and Crystal Palace.
All three are aiming to bolster their attacking ranks. Brighton play good football but do not finish as many chances as they should. Palace, meanwhile, have Odsonne Edouard and Christian Benteke up front but are looking for another if they offload Jean-Philippe Mateta.
However, the Mail warn that Newcastle may have the edge for Mavididi, because his younger brother Shaun is already at the club.
The report also reveals that Montpellier’s asking price for the 23-year-old Stephy Mavididi is around £15m.
That kind of figure is well within reach for Newcastle these days, although they will have to work out how such an outlay would affect their other deals.
Newcastle identify preferred defender deals
For now, Newcastle will likely be focusing on finding a new centre-half.
The relegation-threatened Magpies have leaked 42 goals in 19 Premier League games. Only bottom-of-the-table Norwich have conceded more this season.
Newcastle have made several bids for Lille’s Sven Botman, but the Dutch star looks untouchable in France.
90min also claim that Newcastle “have upped their offer” for Sevilla defender Diego Carlos.
The Geordies are in talks with the LaLiga club for the 28-year-old, who is now claimed to be their top target.
An opening bid of just under £30m was turned down, and now sources have confirmed that an offer around £33m has been presented to Sevilla.
The Spanish side want £40m for the centre-back, per the report. But while Newcastle have the cash, they may struggle persuading the Brazilian to move to England.
According to Teleradiostereo, Newcastle want to bring the 32-year-old back to the Premier League.
Again though, per the report, Smalling is “not fully convinced” by leaving Rome for a relegation battle.
Smalling has resurrected his career since initially moving to Roma on loan in 2019.