Newcastle join PL club in pursuit of frustrated proven PL attacker - report
By Will Butcher
Newcastle are weighing up a move for Stoke City’s versatile attacker Jonathan Walters, according to a report.
The Telegraph claim the 33-year-old forward has become increasingly frustrated at the Britannia Stadium this season, after starting just five league games under Mark Hughes.
However, it is believed that Rafa Benitez’s Magpies are not the only club interested in the experienced Ireland international, with Burnley also keen on Stoke’s number 19.
The former Ipswich Town ace has just over a year left on his current contract with the Potters, after falling down the pecking order beneath the likes of Mame Biram Diouf and Marko Arnautovic.
Making 22 appearances in all competitions in total this season, Walters has shown in glimpses what he is capable of in the final third in England’s top flight.
Subscribe to Football Insider TV now
Scoring four goals against the likes of Burnley, Chelsea and Liverpool (two), he has also provided four assists for Hughes’ side as Stoke sit in a comfortable 11th place.
Newcastle are set to enter the summer transfer market under Benitez, after confirming their instant return to the Premier League with a 4-1 win over Preston on Monday night.
It sees the Toon join Brighton in gaining promotion from the Championship, just one year after being relegated from the top tier of English football.
Football Insider verdict:
Although he is already well into his thirties, Walters is a proven Premier League goalscorer and bringing him on a 12-month or two-year deal is only going to benefit a club looking to avoid relegation. Scoring 43 goals and adding another 21 assists in the top tier proves that he is capable of producing in the final third, as Benitez looks to add proven talent to keep the Toon afloat of relegation during the 2017-18 season. Likely to be available at a cheap price, Benitez would be able to add Walters to his attacking ranks and spend money elsewhere on other areas of his squad.
In other Newcastle transfer news, West Ham and the Toon have tabled a bid for this 25-year-old Ligue 1 speed machine.