By Russell Edge

15th Jan, 2018 | 9:33pm

Journalist: Newcastle attacker eyed for transfer exit as reported Benitez target replacement

Newcastle United striker Dwight Gayle is being lined up for a transfer swoop by Fulham to replace attacking midfield star Tom Cairney, according to a journalist.
The Guardian’s deputy sports news editor Ed Aarons has claimed on his personal Twitter account that the Cottagers have identified the 27-year-old striker as the prime target after the Magpies’ Premier League rivals submitted a £15million bid for the Championship midfielder.

It has been previously claimed that Newcastle boss Rafael Benitez had made the 26-year-old his top target for the January transfer window, but it is said to be the Baggies who have stolen the lead for his capture.
The one-cap Scotland international has suffered with knee problems this season, limiting him to netting just once and chipping in with two assists during his 17 appearances.
Gayle meanwhile has struggled after finishing last season as the Magpies’ top scorer last season, with three goals in 20 appearances.
Football Insider verdict
If Fulham do accept West Brom’s offer of £15million for Cairney, then Newcastle will know just how much money the Cottagers have at their disposal. While Gayle is not going to break the bank for any club, the Magpies will no doubt be able to charge a premium for his services, especially considering his record in England’s second tier last season. Will Newcastle sanction a move? For the right price, pretty much anyone is up for sale at St James’ Park, although Gayle may be one who Benitez looks to rap the price up for as a result of the Magpies’ lack of attacking options.
In other Newcastle United transfer news, the club are tipped to secure the signing of a veteran international for a bargain deal.
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