West Ham United and Newcastle are reportedly among the clubs keen on signing Nigerian forward Taiwo Awoniyi from Union Berlin in the summer.

According to GOAL, West Ham United and Newcastle are involved in a three-way Premier League battle with Southampton to sign in-form Union Berlin striker Taiwo Awoniyi.

The 24-year-old attacker spent six years on the books at Liverpool but never made an appearance for the Reds due to difficulties obtaining a work permit in England. Instead, he was loaned out on seven different occasions, including two spells with Belgian outfit Mouscron and stints at German clubs FSV Frankfurt and FSV Mainz.

Following another unsuccessful loan term at Mainz, Awoniyi joined Union Berlin in 2020 and has not looked back since. He initially signed the German capital outfit on a loan deal before the Bundesliga side forked out £6.5 million to land his services permanently last summer.

To date, Awoniyi has made 57 competitive appearances for Die Eisernen and has 29 goal contributions to his name (21 Goals, 8 Assists). The Nigerian star has been arguably Union’s best player this season and has proved to be an integral part of the team’s general play alongside his goal-scoring exploits, notching up 16 goals and four assists in 35 games across all competitions.

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However, Awoniyi could be on his way back to England after two years in the German capital, with his form attracting interest from a host of Premier League clubs, including West Ham United and Newcastle. West Ham’s desperation for a striker has been well-documented. Manager David Moyes wants to sign a backup for Michail Antonio, who is the only striker on the books at the London Stadium.

Awoniyi fits Moyes’ recruitment profile – he is relatively young, quick, strong, and physically robust. The former Liverpool forward certainly looks built for the rigours of Premier League football. Stylistically, he is very similar to Antonio and can operate as an advanced forward, full of running and often willing to drift wide and give the full-backs a run for their money.

As for Newcastle, they have recently been linked with an audacious move for Napoli striker Victor Osimhen but could face immense competition from several European giants for his signature, which could force the Magpies to look elsewhere. To that end, Osimhen’s Nigerian international teammate Awoniyi could prove to be a decent alternative.

Furthermore, with Dwight Gayle expected to leave St James’ Park at the end of the season, manager Eddie Howe would require a quality replacement to join Callum Wilson and Chris Wood on the striking roster.

As such, the report mentions that the trio of Newcastle, West Ham and Southampton are willing to pay £25 million for the exciting forward, who is now a full Nigeria international, which would make the process of gaining a work permit much simpler.

From the player’s perspective, Awoniyi is keen to prove his worth on English soil after never getting the chance to showcase his talent at Anfield. The report also mentions that Awoniyi’s former club, Liverpool, could be in line for a multi-million windfall if any deal goes through, having negotiated a 10% sell-on clause when they sold him last year.

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