Newcastle United striker targets: The transfer options being considered and where potential deals stand

Mark Donnelly takes a look at the strikers linked to Newcastle United as their search for a frontman to replace Callum Wilson is stepped up.

While Newcastle United’s hunt for defensive reinforcements has come to the fore in recent days, behind the scenes the work continues to identify suitable attacking recruits.

A new striker has been a major priority for Eddie Howe and the club’s transfer team this month, with the injury to Callum Wilson only intensifying the need for fresh recruits.

And after failing to score against Cambridge United at the weekend, there will be plenty of questions asked about who can deliver in front of goal during Wilson’s eight-week absence.

Internal options are limited - emphasised by Howe being forced to deploy Allan Saint-Maximin as the central striker during the FA Cup defeat - and so focus has naturally turned to external options.

But which of the long list of strikers being considered by the Magpies’ transfer team would be the best fit?

NewcastleWorld evaluates all the options currently on the table - to see which deals could be likely, and where the stumbling blocks may lie…

Dominic Solanke

Once one of the most highly-rated young strikers in England, Solanke long-threatened to break onto the scene in the Premier League at Chelsea and subsequently Liverpool.

But it took a move to Bournemouth, and their drop into the Championship, for the 24-year-old to really make his mark.

The one-time England cap has netted 18 times already during the current Championship season, adding to his 15-goal haul from the 2020/21 campaign.

They are impressive numbers in the second tier, and it’s no surprise to see him emerging on the radar of top flight clubs in need of a striker this winter.

It’s even less surprising to see him emerge as a potential target for Newcastle, given Howe is known to be a long-term admirer.

But there are some real question marks over this deal - not least the fact that Solanke is unproven in the Premier League.

In his 63 appearances in the top division to date, he has scored just four goals.

That ratio, coupled with the fact Bournemouth will likely demand a high fee for their prize asset, mean this could be viewed as a risky deal to pursue.

Alexander Isak

The Swedish international has been described as Newcastle’s ‘ideal addition’ this month by some reports, and is a player in demand with Arsenal also monitoring his situation following an impressive Euro 2020.

But with a release clause currently standing at around £75million, it will take some serious capital to lure the 22-year-old away from Real Sociedad this month.

Isak has also been fairly goal-shy this term, scoring just four goals in La Liga thus far.

With Howe searching for a proven goalscorer, that record may prove something of a concern - as will his lack of Premier League experience.

Patrik Schick

Another player who enjoyed a fruitful Euro 2020, Schick has been on Newcastle United’s radar for a number of years and has been regularly watched by the Magpies’ top talent spotters.

And with 18 goals to his name already this season, the Czech international has unsurprisingly drawn admiring glances from a number of clubs this month.

But an asking price in the excess of £50million could make this a very difficult deal to do.

Schick has also gone on record with his desire to remain in Germany with current side Bayer Leverkusen.

He recently told Bild: “Of course it’s nice to read when you’re linked with the big clubs.

“But I’m really, really happy in Leverkusen and I want to go to the Champions League with Bayer 04. I love living in Germany.

Chris Wood

While Wood may not be the most glamorous name on this list, he’s arguably exactly what Newcastle need.

A proven Premier League goalscorer, he would have relished some of the deliveries being whipped into the box on Saturday afternoon.

Goalscorers of his ilk are difficult to come by - and that’s why Burnley are so keen to retain his services this month.

The Lancashire side will not sell the striker to a relegation rival, so this is one that looks highly unlikely to happen.

Sardar Azmoun

Azmoun is a name that has been mentioned at St James’ Park this month, and there is definite interest from Newcastle in the Iranian international.

His relatively low asking price of around £5million is a tick in his column and could make the deal easier to seal, particularly given his current deal at Zenit St Petersburg expires in the summer.

With ten goals to his name already this season, Azmoun’s record suggests that he could be exactly what Newcastle need - even if his lack of Premier League experience means the deal is something of a risk.

But that low fee could just make it a risk worth taking.

Divock Origi

Liverpool’s long-standing super sub has no shortage of admirers this month, with his contract at Anfield entering its final six months.

Italian side Lazio are said to be keen on Origi. The added complication is the Africa Cup of Nations, with the Reds without Sadio Mane and Mo Salah for up to a month.

The striker’s current employers are said to be keen to retain the striker for the time being, but he has a fair pedigree in the top flight and could be a good fit for Newcastle.

Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang

Out of favour at Arsenal, a loan move for Aubameyang had been touted as a potential opportunity this window.

The striker’s participation at the Africa Cup of Nations adds an extra hurdle to potential negotiations - as too do his six-figure wages at the Emirates Stadium.

Newcastle tried to sign the frontman prior to his switch to Borussia Dortmund, but look unlikely to revisit that this month.

Ben Brereton Diaz

The Blackburn Rovers forward has been in sensational form this season, netting 20 times already in the Championship.

He’s a player that Newcastle have watched for a number of years, going back to his breakthrough at Nottingham Forest.

The Chile international understandably has a great deal of interest this month, but is reported to not be actively seeking an exit.

Blackburn’s ownership group have also made clear their desire to retain the striker and intention to rebuff any bids.

Eddie Nketiah

Nketiah is now entering the final six months of his contract and is yet to reach an agreement with Arsenal over fresh terms.

The striker is understood to be keen on securing regular first-team football and has a number of Premier League sides monitoring his situation.

Crystal Palace are reportedly keen, while the Gunners and their boss Mikel Arteta still hope to tie the striker down to a new contract.

But while there is uncertainty, an opportunity is there to strike a deal.

His record is promising if not fully indicative of a goalscorer who can pull Newcastle clear of relegation danger, and there will be major questions over whether he is the type of striker the club need this month.

With just five Premier League goals to his name, he’s far from the proven option that the Magpies are prioritising.

Darwin Nunez

The Uruguayan has been in sensational form for Benfica this season, and the Portuguese side have slapped a £50million price tag on the striker as they anticipate January interest.

Manchester United are among the sides who are understood to have sent representatives to watch the 22-year-old in recent months, with his 13 league goals attracting no shortage of interest.

He’s a player who is of interest to the Tynesiders, but one who may have offers from higher up the table to consider.

Anthony Martial

The French international is keen on a move away from Old Trafford this month, and has told Ralf Rangnick as much.

He’s likely to be available this month - once Manchester United are willing to let players depart as concerns over COVID-19 dissipate - and a loan move has been mooted.

Sevilla have already seen an approach knocked back but could return later in the month, while talk of a move to Barcelona has been played down.

And while Martial is keen on a move, the general feeling is that a switch to St James’ Park isn’t under consideration by the forward at present.