Stoke’s Spanish striker Joselu is currently on Tyneside for a medical ahead of joining the Magpies in a deal believed to be worth around £5 million.
Trusted journalists such as Lee Ryder, George Caulkin and Miles Starforth reported today that the 27-year-old was heading to Newcastle United as Rafa Benitez aims to bring in another striker, with a deal for Arsenal’s Lucas Perez looking increasingly unlikely due to the players desire to return to Spain.
Joselu will become Newcastle’s 6th signing this summer joining the likes of Mikel Merino, Jacob Murphy, Javier Manquillo, Florian Lejeune and Christian Atsu.
The striker has struggled for regular game time since joining Stoke from Hannover 96 in 2015 for approximately £7million and was subsequently loaned out to Deportivo de La Coruna last season where he made 20 appearances in the league.
He scored a goal every 178 minutes last season compared to Dwight Gayle’s goal every 93 minutes in the Championship.
Spanish football expert Guillem Balagué had the following to say about Joselu:
“Joselu is a big forward good in the air, but better with mobility. Better goalscorer that he has shown lately.”
This bodes well for the tall striker, who has undoubtedly struggled to be ruthless in front of goal since leaving Real Madrid’s B team in 2012. Joselu was thought extremely highly of when he was a youngster in Spain, and was Real Madrid Castilla’s joint top-scorer alongside Alvaro Morata in the 2010-11 season, who has recently just joined Chelsea for almost £60million.
It has been well publicised how frustrated Rafa Benitez has been with transfer dealings at the club this season, and this deal may just help appease some of the current issues and grievances from Rafa as he feels like he can not only use Joselu as a squad player, but improve him, similar to Javier Manquillo.
Joselu has only a handful of appearances in the English Premier League to judge him off, and has never really had a run in the starting eleven in this league, so it is difficult to say how he will fit in the the Newcastle squad but noises from experts and Stoke fans give off positive signs.
When the news started to appear that he was leaving the Potters, fans of the club expressed their frustration on Twitter, with some quotes shown below:
“Why? He’s the only striker that knows where the net is,” said one.
“This pre-season he has been the only striker that’s looked lively.”
“Why are we selling all of our decent players? Something is going on behind the scenes.”
“An absolutely barking big, big mistake,” said another.
The striker has scored 4 goals in 2 pre-season matches against Bolton Wanderers and St. Pauli and could go straight into the squad against Huddersfield after having a full pre-season. Who knows? Maybe he’ll surprise a few.