Newcastle United enter race for Alan Virginius

Newcastle United are reportedly among a host of clubs interested in the services of Sochaux attacking sensation Alan Virginius this summer.

According to Le10 Sport, Newcastle United have entered the race to sign FC Sochaux and France Under-19 attacking prodigy Alan Virginius in the ongoing transfer window.

Virginius came through the ranks at Paris FC before moving to Sochaux in the summer of 2018. The 19-year-old forward made his senior debut for the French Ligue 2 club in 2020 and has since made 50 appearances, bagging eight goals and four assists in the process. 

However, Virginius’ performances in the European Under-19 Championships in June have put him on the radars of several clubs across the continent. The 19-year-old attacker, who can play anywhere across the frontline, finished the tournament with three goals and three assists from four games as France made it to the semi-finals where they fell short against Israel.

Virginius’ exploits in the continental tournament have attracted strong interest from a plethora of clubs, including Newcastle United. The Magpies are gunning for a pivotal transfer window as they look to build a team capable of challenging for European football from next season. To that end, they have already brought in Matt Targett, Nick Pope and Sven Botman.

More signings to strengthen the first team are likely to be on the way, with a new forward high on the shopping list of manager Eddie Howe. Newcastle had been pushing to sign Hugo Ekitike from Reims but have decided to cool off their pursuit of the young Frenchman after the striker’s hesitations to move to St James’ Park.

And, Virginius has now popped up on the radars of the Tyneside outfit, potentially as an alternative for Ekitike. While he does not have any experience in top-flight football, the 19-year-old showcased his potential in the recently-concluded Under-19 European Championships and can be worth taking a punt for Newcastle.

The teenager can add depth in the centre-forward slot by providing cover to Callum Wilson and Chris Wood while also acting as a backup on the flanks for Allan Saint-Maximin. However, Newcastle United will have to face competition from several clubs, including German giants Bayer Leverkusen and Belgian outfit Club Brugges.

Sochaux have already received an offer of around €4 million for Virginius, but they are holding out for a sum of €7 million. The transfer fee should not be a problem for Newcastle United at all, and it remains to be seen if they act on their interest in the teenage prospect.

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