By Russell Edge

19th Apr, 2018 | 5:44pm

Newcastle must avoid temptation of reported perfect target - would be next Riviere

COMMENT

When it comes to the transfer activity of Newcastle United, the last few years has seen fans rarely surprised as to what has come through the door.

With Sports Direct supremo Mike Ashley at the helm as owner, the purse strings have been as tight as Chelsea’s defence was in the 2004/05 season (conceding just 15 goals in the Premier League), and as such managers, including Rafael Benitez, have had to scour the bargain basement for signings.

It is why last summer the likes of Javier Manquillo and Joselu arrived at St James’ Park – cheap options to fill problem positions, without adding the quality that the Spanish boss so desperately looked for on the Magpies’ return to St James’ Park.

Without Ashley selling up in a takeover bid, the scenario is likely to be the same this summer, and cheap deals will be the only way Benitez is going to get the reinforcements he wants, namely another striker.

Therefore, a move for a lightning fast centre forward who is proven in a top flight European league and is available on a free transfer in summer seems the perfect capture, and it is what they could have were they to beat the likes of Everton and Brighton to the signing of Stephane Bahoken.

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The Express claim that the Magpies are among the Premier League hunt chasing the 25-year-old from Strasbourg, with his contract expiring at the end of the season leaving him a free agent, having scored eight goals in 27 appearances.

However, the deal is too good to be true, and the Magpies must use hindsight and look back at how Emmanuel Riviere fared on his arrival in England.

The former Monaco man was a massive flop, and considering he had a better record than Bahoken in France’s top flight, alarm bells should start ringing.

The Strasbourg man might tick a lot of boxes for the club but his signature would be a waste of time and money – not something the Magpies can afford.

In other Newcastle United transfer news, one forward is valued at over seven-times his original price as he gets tempted by an exit.

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