Newcastle United are unlikely to sign Salomon Rondon, according to a report by The Shields Gazette.
Rondon is a top target for Newcastle and they are continuing to keep their tabs on him ahead of a potential summer transfer deal.
But the price of this transfer could be too costly for Newcastle, forcing them to drop their interest in the powerful striker.
Rondon’s release clause is set at £16.5m but Newcastle will also have to account for his hefty wage demands and agent fees, meaning the overall price of a deal would be quite high.
As a result, the Magpies are looking at alternatives up front, including Swansea City’s Jordan Ayew – priced at £13m – and 20-year-old Lyon striker Jean-Philippe Mateta, who netted 19 goals in 16 games on loan at Ligue 2 side Le Havre last season.
Rondon’s goal record is less impressive, although he is renowned for his physicality and hold-up play rather than his finishing.
Last season, the Venezuela international netted 10 goals in all competitions, including seven in the Premier League as the Baggies were relegated to the Championship.
In three seasons at The Hawthorns, the 28-year-old has scored 28 goals in 119 games and he is also a target for Chelsea, Tottenham Hotspur and West Ham United.
Rondon is a useful physical presence up front for any mid-table Premier League side but Newcastle already have that type of player in Aleksandar Mitrovic.
Surely it is worth giving the Serbia international another chance rather than splashing big money on Rondon, as Mitrovic is always a handful for defenders and has proven at Fulham that he knows where the net is.
If I was Benitez, I would pursue the deal for Mateta as a long-term solution up front but persevere with Mitrovic over buying Rondon for the short-term.
West Brom fans – Will Rondon stay or go this summer? Let us know below…