NUFC favourites to sign Barca star who Koeman says is ‘a joy to watch’
Report: Newcastle now favourites to sign Barcelona star who Koeman says is ‘a joy to watch’
Photo by Rico Brouwer/Soccrates/Getty Images

Report: Newcastle now favourites to sign Barcelona star who Koeman says is ‘a joy to watch’

Newcastle United are ahead of Sevilla in the race to sign Barcelona attacker Memphis Depay, according to Mundo Deportivo.

The Spanish newspaper claims the Catalan giants need to reduce their wage bill if they are to welcome new signings in January. As a result, they say the Dutchman is the ‘most viable option’ of doing so.

The 28-year-old’s contract expires at the end of the season, and the club need to get rid of his £159,000-a-week wage.

Photo by Rico Brouwer/Soccrates/Getty Images

Whilst the player is yet to accept a departure, the Magpies are one of the main sides named as a potential suitor.

Sevilla have previously been mentioned with interest, but Mundo Deportivo report the Tyneside outfit are a more likely destination as the forward is looking to secure a ‘lucrative contract’.

The Toon are seen favourably due to being third place in the Premier League, and also due to their vast wealth.

Newcastle interested in Depay

When looking at Depay’s statistics, it is no wonder Newcastle are keen to lure him to St James’ Park in January.

Compared with other attackers across Europe over the past year, the 28-year-old ranks in the top one percent for passes attempted and progressive passes received. He also comes in the top six percent for dribbles completed and in the top 12 percent for shot-creating actions.

Having bagged an incredible 42 goals in 81 appearances for the Netherlands national team, Depay is a lethal finisher in front of goal.

His dazzling footwork and rapid pace mean he is suited to a wide range of positions across the front-line – something Eddie Howe would sure look to exploit.

Photo by Rico Brouwer/Soccrates/Getty Images

The Magpies have been on the lookout for a new winger since the summer now, but it may appear they have found their man in the former Manchester United star.

Having struggled with injuries in attack this term, the arrival of Depay would provide quality in depth to Howe’s squad.

Hailed by former Netherlands and Barcelona manager Ronald Koeman as ‘a joy to watch’, the Magpies will be keeping tabs on the attacker ahead of the January transfer window.