Newcastle plot Benitez havoc as €20m transfer battle takes shape

Yerry Mina Dominic Calvert-Lewin Everton August 2021

Newcastle United could deprive their former boss Rafael Benitez of one of his Everton players after they were linked with Yerry Mina.

Benitez was a popular manager for Newcastle during his spell on Tyneside, but his loyalties now lie with Everton. Both clubs have encountered some difficulties in the first part of the season and are facing important January transfer windows.

Defence is an area in which both clubs could be looking for reinforcements. To that end, they have both been linked with Brentford captain Pontus Jansson, for example.

But there is a chance that one player could switch one of the clubs for another. According to Jeunes Footeux, Newcastle want to take Mina from Everton.

Mina has played for the Toffees since 2018, when he joined from Barcelona after representing Colombia at the World Cup. He made 15 appearances in his debut season, 33 in his second and 29 in his third.

So far this term, he has featured seven times in the Premier League. His long-term future is unclear, though.

Mina is only under contract at Goodison Park until 2023. According to the report, Everton would be willing to accept an offer of around €20m for him this January.

Pontus Jansson linked to several Premier League clubs

Brentford captain Pontus Jansson has been linked with Everton, Leicester and Newcastle.

Newcastle would be able to afford the fee, but their task will be to convince Mina. The 27-year-old is also attracting interest from Serie A giants AC Milan.

Milan have lost Simon Kjaer to injury for a number of months. They will need a replacement in January to sustain a title challenge and Mina is under consideration.

It is tough competition for Newcastle to fend off despite their financial power. But they will keep working to try and secure the defensive signings that new boss Eddie Howe is eager for.

Newcastle likely to be busiest during an unusually-hectic January transfer window

Newcastle find Yerry Mina alternative from Championship

There have been doubts about the willingness of other Premier League clubs to do business with Newcastle following their Saudi-backed takeover.

Furthermore, their precarious position in the table is making it tricky to attract top talent.

With that in mind, reports over the weekend revealed how they could solve their defensive concerns by turning to a player from the Championship whom Howe knows well.

According to The Sun, Newcastle are considering a swoop for Bournemouth captain Steve Cook.

Howe coached Cook during his time working with the South Coast club. They worked together in League One, the Championship and the Premier League until Bournemouth’s relegation in 2020, when Howe left the club.

Cook played 42 times in the Championship last season but has only played three times in the league this term. He has worked his way back into contention in recent weeks.

But the pull of reuniting with Howe in the Premier League and becoming part of Newcastle’s new era could give the Cherries skipper something to consider.

At the age of 30 and with a contract until the end of the season, he shouldn’t be the most expensive target.

READ MORENewcastle panic as Everton look to have pipped them to major transfer