Newcastle ‘contact’ Chelsea over Armando Broja transfer as Eddie Howe changes striker focus

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The Magpies are expected to spend big this summer and have lined-up the Chelsea youngster as their next target following an impressive loan spell at Southampton last season

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Newcastle United continue to battle for a deal for Reims striker Hugo Ekitike but, with growing impatience in the Magpies camp as a result of continuously stalled negotiations, a number of back-up options are now being considered.

If Eddie Howe’s side are to build on last season’s 11th-placed finish then a guaranteed goalscorer must be acquired this summer, after Callum Wilson’s injury and Chris Wood’s slow start to life on Tyneside restricted the Magpies to scoring just 44 goals all season.

As a result, the latest reports have now revealed that Newcastle have made ‘contact’ with Chelsea over the possibility of signing Armando Broja this summer, as Howe looks to secure at least one striker before next season.

According to The Northern Echo, Newcastle have made a formal inquiry to the Blues about Broja as they begin to line up alternative options to Ekitike, with the 20-year-old appearing to be one of Howe’s top striking targets this summer following an impressive showing last year.

Broja joined Southampton on a season-long loan deal ahead of last season in order to continue his development and gain more regular first team experience, of which he grasped with both hands after impressing on the south coast with nine goals and one assist in 38 games in all competitions.

The Albanian became a regular in Ralph Hasenhuttl’s side during the 2021/22 campaign and made 32 top flight appearances as the Saints secured another season of Premier League football with a 15th-placed finish, while he also netted four times for his national side, but now he will return to Chelsea ahead of pre-season.

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Chelsea will listen to offers for Armando Broja this summer
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Image:

Southampton FC via Getty Images)

Where do you think Armando Broja will end up this summer? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below.

However, although he is set to link up with the rest of Thomas Tuchel’s first-team squad next month, the Blues are expected to listen to offers for his services, whether on loan or in a permanent deal, due to the slim chances of him becoming a regular starter with Chelsea next season.

Broja is a product of the west London outfit’s impressive academy set-up and signed his first professional deal in February 2020, before making his one and only appearance so far in the following month, coming on as an 86th minute replacement for Olivier Giroud in a 4-0 victory over Everton at Stamford Bridge.

Since then, two loan spells have occurred, of which the first came with Eredivisie side Vitesse during the 2020-21 campaign, where he again impressed with 11 goals and three assists in 34 games in all competitions for the Dutch outfit. But since his return from Southampton this summer, it seems as though he is set to depart once again.

And it is likely that the Magpies are going to submit an offer for a permanent deal, with Broja’s ripe age of just 20-years-old meaning that there is still plenty of room for him to continue his development with the Magpies, although West Ham United are also circling.

However, it is thought that this is set to be a back-up option should an increasingly-unlikely deal for Ekitike not be completed by the end of the month, with the north east outfit struggling to convince the 20-year-old to join the club despite having a bid accepted by Reims in May ..

The French under-20 international is said to want assurance of guaranteed game time and is not convinced that this will be granted at St. James’s Park next season, and now he and his agent are mulling over their options. According to Sky Sports News, via the Shields Gazette, this has left the Magpies on the brink of pulling out of the race altogether.

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