By Danny Wright
Southampton have offered Jay Rodriguez to Newcastle, according to a report.
The Newcastle Chronicle claims that the attacker’s representatives have been in touch with the Magpies over a potential deal.
On Saturday, the 27-year-old’s father Kiko Rodriguez dropped a huge hint that his son will be leaving St Mary’s in the summer after failing to hold down a regular spot in Claude Puel’s side with Shane Long and Manolo Gabbiadini currently the preferred options up front.
The Daily Mail reported on 24 April that West Brom are also pursuing Rodriguez and that they tried to sign him for £12million in January.
The Chronicle reports that Rafa Benitez has been offered an array of players who, like Rodriguez, are proven performers in the Premier League after Newcastle’s title-winning Championship campaign.
It is also understood that Benitez is beginning to draw up a shortlist of players he wants to sign over the summer after recently been offered the full financial backing of owner Mike Ashley.
Rodriguez bagged a goal and an assist in his last outing for the Saints in the 2-1 win at Middlesbough on Saturday in what was his first league start in over a month.
The versatile winger, who can also play as a striker, has scored six goals in 34 appearances for Southampton in all competitions this season.
Football Insider Verdict
It’s good that Newcastle are finally beginning to be offered some players because they need to make some vast improvements to their squad over the summer if they wish to pull off a good season on their return to the Premier League. Rodriguez is a player that has had his career hampered by serious injury but is really great to have around a squad due to his hard work ethic and raw talent in front of goal. His time at St. Mary’s hasn’t been the best and the one-time England international really should be holding down regular first-team football at this stage of his career. He is certainly an improvement on Benitez’s current attacking options.