By Noel Whelan

15th Jan, 2022 | 10:00am

Newcastle tipped to sign Wood ally after Sky's £25m talks update - pundit

Noel Whelan has tipped Newcastle United to sign another striker this month following the arrival of Chris Wood.

The former Leeds and Middlesbrough striker, speaking exclusively to Football Insider, insisted the 30-year-old’s signing would give any other new additions “breathing room” to adapt to life at St James’ Park.

As reported by Sky Sports on Wednesday (12 January), Newcastle are in talks over a £25million deal to sign Hugo Ekitike from Reims.

The Magpies have reportedly agreed a payment structure with the Ligue 1 side and the 19-year-old is keen to make the move.

Whelan suggested the Wood’s proven Premier League pedigree allows Eddie Howe to take a risk on a younger forward.

Asked if Newcastle could afford to gamble on an unproven forward, Whelan told Football Insider’s Russell Edge: “Yeah, I think so.

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“Right now you would choose Chris Wood over the other names that were bandied about.

“When you’re looking at people coming from abroad, they might not know the league. They might not know the battle that they have in front of them. Chris Wood does.

“He’s been in it all season with Burnley as well, and for most of the seasons that he’s been there. So he’s got that mentality, he’s got that know-how.

“He knows what he needs to do to help his team. If you want to go into the market and get another player that’s going to cost a little bit more money, who is a bit more for the future, that gives them that little bit more breathing room.

“It will allow him to adapt to what he’s going to come into. It’s not going to be fun. It’s gonna be a really, really tight one if Newcastle stay up.”

Newcastle reportedly spent £25million to trigger Wood’s release clause at Burnley.

The Magpies’ main striker this season, Callum Wilson, is currently out injured at St James’ Park.

In other news, La Liga expert “amazed” as Newcastle United submit a fresh offer for Champions League star.