If anything was evident in yesterday’s goalless draw with Arsenal, it was that Newcastle need more cutting edge up front. Although to be fair to Shola Ameobi, Demba Ba for the first half and Leon Best and Peter Lovenkrands when they came on in the second, they didn’t see much of the ball, when they did they failed to do anything significant with it. Alan Pardew says Newcastle need two players (at least) and while one of those will be a replacement for Jose Enrique, the other has to be a quality striker. One stiker who might be available and didn’t even feature against Newcastle yesterday is Arsenal’s Nicklas Bendtner. Reportedly available for around £8 million, would the Denmark international be worth a punt?
Newcastle are thought to be ready to battle Stoke City for the services of the unwanted 23-year-old. The Magpies were thought to be targeting another front man in the form of Eren Derdiyok who currently plays for Bayer Laverkusen in Germany, even sending chief scout Graham Carr to watch the Swiss international. However, Newcastle have been forced to focus elsewhere after Derdiyok stated he had no intention of leaving Laverkusen, who will play in this season’s Champions League.
“I did not realise they were watching me, but it does not make any difference to how I feel about my future,” he said. “I have a contract with Leverkusen until 2013, and I am extremely happy with that. I have no thoughts about leaving, because I have managed to force my way into the team at Leverkusen, and we now have a Champions League campaign to look forward to. I do not want to miss out on that after helping us to qualify” continued the Swiss player.
It leaves Newcastle to double their efforts in now trying to secure the services of Bendtner, who has been long out of favour at Arsenal, and courted by other clubs, most notably Stoke. The Potters, who were thought to be leading the chase for Peter Crouch, have now grown tired of the Tottenham forward, and have instead offered around £8 million for Dane.
It remains to be seen whether Pardew rivals Pulis for the signature of Bendtner, however in a similar way to Gabriel Obertan, the Dane clearly has some talent but is yet to show it on a regular basis. St James’ Park could be the perfect arena for him to do just that…
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