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Benitez lines up shock second move for ex-England striker - report

By Alex Taylor

Rafa Benitez is preparing to make a stunning move for former Liverpool star Peter Crouch, according to a report.

The Mirror claim that the pair could be reunited at St James’ Park eleven years after the former Real Madrid manager first signed the 6ft 7in forward at Anfield in 2005.

The move may be regarded as a shock given Crouch has turned 35, Benitez discarded him after three mixed seasons on Merseyside and the veteran’s lack of pace.

But he could be willing to drop down to the Championship in search of regular football and rejoin his former boss.

The deal could be made simpler as the former England international has entered the final year of his current deal at Stoke.

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Crouch has played 135 times under Benitez and produced a reasonable return, scoring 42 goals and providing 14 assists.

His more recent record leaves much to be desired, though, as he started just four games in the Premier League last season, scoring one goal and failed to provide a single assist.

Benitez has already made five signings this summer in Matz Sels, Jesus Gamez, Isaac Hayden, Matt Ritchie and Dwight Gayle.

In other Newcastle news, the Magpies £10million striker Dwight Gayle has explained the attention to possession based football in training