Newcastle United are reportedly ready to offer a sum of €20 million in order to secure the signing of Barcelona defender Samuel Umtiti.

According to a report from El Nacional, out-of-favour Barcelona defender Samuel Umtiti has emerged as a transfer target for Premier League club Newcastle United ahead of the January transfer window.

Umtiti has been with Barcelona since 2016 when he arrived from French club Olympique Lyon. While the 28-year-old enjoyed a fine debut campaign at Camp Nou, things have gone downhill for him ever since as he has been ravaged by perennial injury problems. 

Umtiti has made 133 appearances for Barça, scoring two goals and registering an assist. However, he has featured in fewer than 15 matches in La Liga in each of the last three seasons while playing just once in all competitions in the ongoing campaign, indicating how far down the pecking order he is at the club.

Barcelona were intent on offloading the 2018 FIFA World Cup winner in the summer earlier this year but could not find a suitor for Umtiti, whose wages are becoming a problem for the Catalans as well as his suitors. Benfica had shown an interest in signing him in the upcoming January window but have since moved on to other targets.

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There have been reports of interest from AC Milan, with Newcastle United also entering the fray for his signing now. The Magpies are staring at the prospect of relegation from the Premier League as they sit second from bottom in the Premier League table. The defence has been a major issue for the Tyneside outfit, having let in the most number of goals by any team in the English top-flight this term (41).

So, manager Eddie Howe is intent on addressing that issue during the January transfer window by bringing in an experienced defender to aid their push for survival. Names like James Tarkowski, Ben Mee have been linked, with Umtiti emerging as a potential target for Newcastle United.

The report goes as far as indicating that the club, with their newfound riches, would be willing to shell out €20 million to secure his signing from Barcelona next month. The Catalans would welcome such an offer as they are looking for funds to strengthen their squad. However, Umtiti has shown a reluctance to leave Camp Nou despite his lack of game-time and convincing him will be a big challenge.

While he is an experienced customer, Newcastle can do better than the 28-year-old next month. Umtiti has hardly played regularly for over three years now, and his injury record is a major red flag as well. At the time, they need reliable players to drag them out of trouble, and Umtiti would hardly offer that.

Comments 1

  1. Caleb Nengesha Nyianaka says:

    Newcastle should be talking about Nathan Ake and Zinchenko, not Umtiti. They should also get a sharp shooter to lead the attack as well as a good distributor in the midfield. That way, they can avoid relegation.

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