Ousmane Dembélé continues to get linked to Premier League sides as Barcelona are ‘very, very close’ to giving up in their efforts to retain him beyond his current deal that expires next June.

Sport on Friday explain Newcastle United have emerged as an ‘exotic adventure’ for the winger, after he has decided against renewing his contract at the Camp Nou.

To renew contract, the 24-year-old is demanding a gross annual salary of €30m and a signing on bonus of €30m, along with a €15m commission to his agent. The Blaugrana consider these demands to be ‘crazy’.

Newcastle United were purchased by Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund in October. The report states Magpies new owners want to ‘unload the petrodollars’ to shape up their new project at St James’ part.

It’s claimed the Tyneside club have ‘sent a succulent offer’ to the France international, which is believed to be worth close to €20m per year. The attacker has, however, ‘dismissed that possibility’ to join Eddie Howe’s side so far.

Newcastle are currently in the relegation zone and are in the danger of dropping to the Championship, which is why, for now, the Magpies aren’t an ‘attractive option’ for Dembélé.

Down their end, Barcelona have not decided what to do with the player if he doesn’t accept to be sold in January.

The options are either to send him to the stands until the end of the season or terminate his contract [thus allowing him to join another club on a free transfer in January] so that they can save on the Frenchman’s salary.