By support

7th Apr, 2017 | 6:40am

Report: Newcastle in race to sign prolific PL forward, Benitez sees him as perfect

By Dominic Toner

Newcastle are interested in signing Sunderland forward Jermain Defoe, according to a report

The Sun claim that the Magpies have joined the race to sign the prolific 34-year-old striker from arch rivals Sunderland.

It is understood that the England international will be made available for a free transfer if the Black Cats are relegated from the Premier League, with the club 10 points adrift from safety.

The report details that Newcastle will face competition from West Ham and Bournemouth for his signature, but Rafael Benitez views Defoe as the perfect addition for next season.

Defoe would be on the market if Sunderland face the drop from the top flight and David Moyes’ side are heavily tipped to be in the Championship next season.

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The forward has been in sensational form this season despite his club’s difficulties and earned a recall to the national side.

He has scored 14 goals in 33 appearances this season across all competitions and is a proven Premier League goal scorer.

Meanwhile, Newcastle are top of the Championship and are set to be promoted this campaign.

Football Insider verdict:

Newcastle’s move for Defoe will cause carnage on Tyneside and Sunderland fans will be desperate for the striker not to join their rivals. However, Benitez may be able to offer the forward Premier League football next season and would be looking to establish themselves in the top flight. He would be a fantastic addition to the Magpies squad and would bring great experience to the side. Defoe has scored 158 Premier League goals and is showing no signs of slowing down. Newcastle will need some extra quality next season if they get promoted and a controversial move for Defoe could turn out to be a genius one.

In other Newcastle transfer news, European giants are plotting a summer swoop for the club’s wonderkid.

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