Already trying their luck in January, Newcastle United decided it was time to go all out this summer to try and sign Hugo Ekitike.
They got in there early, with an offer of €36m + €10m in bonuses made, which, according to L’Equipe, was ‘validated’ by his club, Stade de Reims.
However, Ekitike and his entourage ‘want to wait before committing’, knowing that, other than Newcastle, European clubs are circling, with the latest none other than Real Madrid.
That’s what the French newspaper claim on Tuesday, revealing that following their failure to lure Kylian Mbappé, the Champions League winner are ‘thinking of buying a striker they consider a future great to gently prepare the post-Benzema era’.
The idea would be to bring Ekitike in early so he can get used to the Madrid environment all the while playing a rotation role, much like Eduardo Camavinga did this year.
With all that in mind, Real Madrid have ‘made the first approaches with the entourage’ of the player, and his agent would have even travelled to the Spanish capital to meet with those in charge of the La Liga giants.
Despite all this, though, it’s made clear that Newcastle ‘remain favourites’, because unlike Real Madrid, Paris Saint-Germain or even Bayern Munich, the Magpies have made an offer.
The bid put forward ‘cannot be refused’, especially since it’s unlikely any of the other clubs will ‘offer a similar amount’.
That being said, as has been said before, Newcastle won’t wait around forever in a situation that still seems ‘far from a resolution’.