Chelsea have activated Demba Ba’s well-documented release clause of £7m and Newcastle’s Senegalese star is on his way to London to thrash out contract negotiations.
He has been omitted from the Toon’s squad for their game with Everton – which they are priced at 21/10 to win – in light of this news and could seal his move in time to figure in the Blues’ FA Cup clash with Southampton at the weekend.
As the Tynesiders continue to strive in the face of relegation, losing their talisman will be a bitter blow and is sure to have a massive impact in their bid to beat the drop.
Ba has been pretty much the only shining light in Newcastle’s glum season to date, bagging 13 of the club’s 26 goals. No other player in the Premier League has scored a higher percentage of his sides’ goals and, unless a substantial replacement is drafted in quickly, they could soon find themselves in hot water.
In this day and age, £7m is a paltry figure for a goal scorer who is proven in the top flight and it’s difficult to see how Newcastle are going to effectively reinvest this cash on a like for like replacement.
The onus looks like it will be on Papiss Cisse to rediscover the scoring touch he brought to the Premier League with him when he arrived last season. He has looked a shadow of the man who set the top-flight alight last time around though and has found the back of the net incredibly hard to find.
These two factors justify any concern the Toon Army are feeling right now, as what’s been a rough season so far could be about to get a whole lot rougher.
All odds and markets accurate as of publication’s time and date