Newcastle United finished in the safety of 10th-place last season. Now they’re looking to push on in the coming campaign.
Everyone knows Newcastle boss Rafa Benitez can organise a defence. But the Magpies need to improve at the other end of the pitch if they’re going to take the next step.
Just two of their players scored over five league goals last season. And Burnley (36) were the only side in the top 14 to score less top-flight goals than Newcastle (39).
Now they’ve reportedly opened talks with Nice over a deal for Alassane Plea. We’ve taken a look at what the French forward could bring to St. James’ Park…
Plea struck 21 goals in all competitions for Nice last season. He set up six more for his teammates too. The 25-year-old would bring a much-needed cutting edge to the Newcastle attack.
He’d also give Benitez plenty of options. He can play up front or wide on the left. He’s also used to playing in a front two, which means he could link up well with Ayoze Perez.
Newcastle aren’t the only club interested though. West Ham United and Everton have also been linked with the former Lyon man.
It does seem like he’s keen for a move. He didn’t report for the first day of pre-season with Nice.
But that doesn’t mean the Ligue 1 side will be happy to let him leave. Mario Balotelli and Jean Michel Seri are both expected to go this summer.
Newcastle may need to splash the cash to convince them to part with Plea too. If he gets the goals that fire them up the table, it would be well worth it.
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All Odds and Markets correct as of date of publication