Newcastle tear up contract of striker signed by Rafa Benitez

Yoshinori Muto Newcastle TEAMtalk

Japan international Yoshinori Muto has left Newcastle after his contract was torn up by mutual consent with a year remaining.

The Magpies have confirmed that the 29-year-old striker, who has been linked with a return to his native country with Vissel Kobe reportedly monitoring his situation, has severed his ties with the club.

A statement on Newcastle’s website read: “Japan international forward Yoshinori Muto has left Newcastle United by mutual consent. The club and player have come to an agreement on the final year of his contract.

“Everybody at Newcastle United thanks him for his efforts at St James’ Park and wishes him well for the future.”

Muto, who was signed from German club Mainz by Rafael Benitez for £9.5m during the summer of 2018, made 10 starts and a further 18 appearances from the bench in all competitions, scoring two goals, the first of them in the Premier League at Manchester United.

However, he spent last season on loan at Spanish side Eibar and, with current head coach Steve Bruce attempting to free up funds in an attempt to strengthen his squad, he has found himself surplus to requirements on Tyneside.

An in depth look at the Premier League title race…

Real Madrid striker interesting Magpies

Meanwhile, Newcastle are reportedly interested in Mariano Diaz after being offered the chance to sign the Real Madrid striker.

Still without a senior summer signing, Newcastle will be hoping to get at least one deal over the line. Their priority is to get Joe Willock back after his positive loan spell from Arsenal last season. He became a useful source of goals from midfield, but they may have to find such inspiration from elsewhere.

Finding a new centre-forward would also be beneficial in this regard; Steve Bruce currently has Callum Wilson, Joelinton and Dwight Gayle at his disposal.

According to Jeunes Footeux, the number of strikers in their squad could increase after they were offered the services of Mariano.

The 28-year-old has had a long association with Madrid, despite never being their first-choice. They sold him to Lyon in 2017 but re-signed him one year later after a 21-goal season in France.

READ MORE: Premier League 2021/22 preview: Chelsea can wrench the title off Pep’s City