Over the past few weeks, Reims star Hugo Ekitike has been linked to West Ham United, Newcastle United, Chelsea and Leicester City.

The Hammers saw their initial offer turned down by the Ligue 1 side. On January 26th, we covered claims made by Le10 Sport that David Moyes’ side had returned with an improved offer worth €25m. However, it didn’t end up convincing the French club.

While West Ham are still in the picture for the 19-year-old in the winter market, he is now ‘fast approaching Newcastle’.

That’s according to journalist Ignazio Genuardi, who took to Twitter to report the efforts made by the Magpies to sign the striker.

While there is competition from West Ham, Eddie Howe’s side have now taken the lead and have ‘ended up putting in’ a bid worth €40m [€30m fixed fee + €10m in bonuses].

Ekitike has impressed for Reims this season, managing eight goals and four assists in 20 matches in all competitions, and the Premier League links have naturally followed.