By Danny Wright

13th May, 2018 | 12:53pm

Benitez must make sure Newcastle clash v Chelsea is final SJP game for £40,000-a-wk player


Newcastle United’s first season back in the Premier League will end with a clash with Chelsea at St James’ Park on Sunday afternoon.

The Magpies fans will be hopeful that there will be a lot of changes made to the squad in the summer in order to continue building it up to be a team that is capable of fighting for top-half finishes.

One player that Rafa Benitez must definitely cash in on in the summer is Dwight Gayle, ensuring that Sunday’s outing against Chelsea is the final time that fans will see him in the black and white stripes at St James’ Park.

The Daily Mail has reported that Stoke are interested in signing up Gayle, 27, as they prepare for life in the Championship.

Gayle was prolific in helping the Magpies win the Championship title last season and there’s a chance that teams like Stoke would pay a decent sum for a player who cost Benitez £10million in 2016.

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The Daily Star reports that Gayle earns £40,000-a-week at St James’ Park and getting him off the wagebill, as well as picking up a decent transfer fee, would certainly helped Benitez strengthen his squad.

The centre-forward’s record in front of goal this term has proved that he is nowhere near good enough to lead the line every week.

He has scored just five goals in 36 appearances across all competitions and has scored in just one Premier League game since early December.

Gayle has been a great servant for the Magpies and they would not be back in the top-flight if it was not for his goals in the Championship.

However there’s no place for sentiment in football anymore and Benitez has to get rid of him in the summer.

In other Newcastle United news, the Magpies are in pole position to sign this 6ft 7in colossus who has snubbed Real Madrid and Man United.

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