By Russell Edge

26th Feb, 2018 | 10:47pm

Forget £17m-rated star, Newcastle must snap up proven international attacker destined for drop

Newcastle United must forget about breaking their transfer record for Galatasaray winger Garry Rodrigues and look at snapping up West Brom’s Matt Phillips instead.
Turkish outlet Millyet have claimed that the Cape Verde international has had a £17.6million price tag slapped on his head by his club, which would be a record breaking fee for the Magpies after their £16million spent on Michael Owen back in 2005.
However they really should be looking closer to home for proven talent, and they could have a chance of snapping up the Baggies’ Phillips instead – if the Midlands club suffer the ignominy of relegation this season.
Alan Pardew’s men are sitting at the very foot of the Premier League table, and after their 2-1 defeat at the hands of Huddersfield, find themselves seven points adrift of safety, looking destined for the drop after a nightmare of a season.
Phillips has been a regular this season, but despite his 25 appearances across all competitions, he has managed to net just two goals and chip in with three assists.
However, the versatile Scotland international, able to operate on either flank, was in much better form last season, scoring four times and setting up eight further goals for his team mates, before a hamstring injury cut his campaign short.
At 26-years-old, he is reaching the peak of his career, and will not be wanting to play Championship football next season, leaving Newcastle the opportunity to snap up his services – if they can avoid the drop themselves.
With Kenedy unlikely to remain at St James’ Park after his loan spell from Chelsea ends, manager Rafael Benitez is evidently keen on bringing another wide man to St James’ Park, and it must be Phillips who they target.
In other Newcastle United news, a Sky Sports pundit has compared one Magpies attacker to an international star sold for £57million.

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