Date: 8th January 2020 at 12:20pm
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The Sun’s Alan Nixon provided an update on Newcastle United’s reported chase for AC Milan forward Krzysztof Piatek yesterday by answering a supporter’s question during a Q&A on Twitter. 

Indeed, he had previously reported that Steve Bruce was hoping Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s return to San Siro could increase the Toon’s chances of capturing the Polish international this month in order to introduce more goals to a side to have bagged just 20 goals in the Premier League all season.

According to Nixon, if the Serie A giants were to receive a fee around the £30m mark (Transfermarkt note they paid Genoa £34.2m for his services 12 months ago), there’s a ‘chance’ a deal could be struck. In a separate tweet, he also noted that – as far as he was aware – that sort of money is available for the Toon Army this month, otherwise they wouldn’t be chasing the 24-year-old.

Could Newcastle seriously pay that sort of money?

Up until last year, it seemed unlikely that Mike Ashley would be willing to splash such cash. However, since the £21m arrival of Miguel Almiron this time last season, the transfer record has been broken again on the £40m addition of Joelinton. Now, the idea that two signings would appease a fanbase in such open revolt against the Sports Direct mogul is frankly fanciful given the fact that St. James’ Park only recently saw its lowest attendance in years, but recent history does at least suggest that the kind of fee mentioned isn’t entirely out of the question.

While Piatek’s goals may have dried up of late (only scoring four in 18 games this season compared to 22 in 37 last term), he has previously proven he can score goals at a level as high as Serie A and, at 24, does have sell-on value should he rediscover the sort of form that sort him signed by Rossoneri in the first place. With that in mind, it could be a worthwhile investment from a business point of view, as well as a footballing matter.

Verdict 

SportsMediaSet have claimed that West Ham United are also keen while Milan manager Stefano Pioli recently suggested that it was possible the man in question could operate as part of the same team as the aforementioned Ibrahimovic. So, prising him away from Italy might be difficult and it’s not as if Newcastle are usually a club to throw money around, it’s just that the notion of them paying the kind of fee mooted by Nixon isn’t as far-fetched as perhaps it would have been a year ago.

It’s clear that the Toon Army need goals given the struggles of Joelinton and, having broken scoring records while at Genoa, Piatek does look as if he could help on that front. Described as a ‘sharp shooter’ by Football Whispers prior to his Milan move and a player who is ‘elusive, trusting his ability to find tiny pockets of space between defenders’, perhaps he can offer a lethal outlet for the likes of Jonjo Shelvey and Allan Saint-Maximin (who both average over 1 key pass per game according to WhoScored), as well as a different option to both Joelinton and Andy Carroll.

Could you see Newcastle paying that kind of money this month? Join the discussion by commenting below…