Newcastle United have been offered the chance to sign striker Charlie Austin from Premier League rivals Southampton, according to The Chronicle.
The newspaper claims that the Magpies have been handed the opportunity to bring the former Queens Park Rangers man to St James’ Park after he had a bust-up with Saints boss Ralph Hasenhuttl.
Newcastle manager Steve Bruce is currently talking over the merits of signing the 30-year-old with the club’s managing director Lee Charnley.
However, the Englishman is just one of a number of players on a transfer shortlist the two men are going over as we speak.
It’s clear that Newcastle still need to add another attacker, despite the club record signing of Brazilian forward Joelinton from German club Hoffenheim on Tuesday. They lost three frontmen in Salomon Rondon, Ayoze Perez and Joselu this summer, and those goals – from the former two at least – need to be replaced. Dwight Gayle is back from a loan spell at Championship side West Bromwich Albion, but he has a chequered record at Premier League level, to say the least. Joelinton, Gayle and Yoshinori Muto are the attackers on Tyneside at the moment, but ideally you’d want one more in to support that group. Is Austin that player? The 2019 version of the Saints star, you’d have to say, probably isn’t. He’s managed just 20 goals in 81 games in all competitions since moving to St Mary’s Stadium in 2016 [Source: Transfermarkt]. Not only is that not many games over that time span, but it’s not many goals either. So surely there must be superior striking options out there for Newcastle.