Not too long ago, it had looked like it was only a matter of time before Newcastle United would get a deal over the line for Hugo Ekitike. Rumours had suggested that the Magpies had agreed a transfer fee with Stade Reims while personal terms with the player himself were not expected to be a sticking point either.
It was considered as a pretty straightforward move for Newcastle United but has proven to be anything but that over the past few weeks.
The Ekitike to Newcastle United transfer saga has dragged on for much longer than anybody would have expected and right now, there are serious doubts about whether the move will even take place or not, as no resolution does not seem to be on the horizon.
As reported by Chronicle Live, Reims expert Timothe Crepin said about the situation involving Ekitike and Newcastle United at the moment:
"“For the moment, the transfer is on stand-by. No club seems to be the favourite. His agent wants a ‘big’ club or a ‘serious’ club I think.“I don’t know if it’s a good choice. For me, Newcastle is a better choice than PSG or Real Madrid. At Newcastle, he has better chances to play.”"
Can Newcastle United sign Ekitike this summer or so should they target other players?
It goes without saying that Ekitike has a lot of potential. He was superb for Stade Reims last season and has all the attributes to be one of the top strikers in all of Europe in the not too distant future. His breakout season in Ligue 1 was even compared to that of a certain Karim Benzema.
But at the same time, Newcastle United cannot continue to pursue a move for Ekitike throughout the summer transfer window. If this saga drags on for much longer, they must turn their attention towards other players as there is no certainty that they will be able to sign him, but they do need another striker.
Neither Callum Wilson nor Chris Wood were able to find the back of the net on a consistent basis last season. The Magpies do need a reliable goalscorer though if they are to challenge for a top six spot.