French outlet RMC have claimed Newcastle have had a €16 million (£14.2m) bid rejected for Nice’s Allan Saint-Maximin, as the club look to build on the signing of Joelinton for a club record fee on Tuesday.
With the Ligue 1 side valuing the 22-year-old French prospect at nothing less than €20m, it is little surprise they baulked at the offer.
With Newcastle reportedly thought to be on the verge of announcing a second signing of the summer, and claims that Newcastle officials flew out of the country to tie-up a deal, Saint-Maximin was largely expected to be the target.
But after the excitement and furore over Mike Ashley sanctioning a record breaking deal for Joelinton this week, it seems Lee Charnley may have reverted to his usual low-balling tactics.
If that is the case, he is playing a very dangerous game. With just 15 days of the transfer window remaining, now is not the time to be playing brinkmanship over possible deals.
Clubs across Europe will know we have just paid a huge sum to Hoffenheim for Joelinton, and will not allow Newcastle off the hook with below-par bids for their players.
No time for Lee Charnley to risk missing out on deals
Now is the time, however, to simply meet asking prices, and get deals done, so players will have time to get used to their surroundings and teammates before the season starts.
That said, they should not be held to ransom for players who selling clubs are clearly over-valuing as the end of the window nears.
But Saint-Maximin – despite questions outstanding about his attitude – would represent good value at €20m, and Charnley should just stump up the extra money and make sure he gets his man.
Only once has his tactic appeared to work for a priority signing, and that was Miguel Almiron in January.
But we simply cannot afford to take the risk this time around, as numbers are so short that failure to bring enough signings in will seriously jeopardise our Premier League status.