Newcastle handed boost in the race to sign Alex Grimaldo but top duo are also in the frame

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Alex Grimaldo Benfica Credit: PA Images
Alex Grimaldo Benfica Credit: PA Images

Newcastle have been handed a boost in their search for a new left-back following reports Benfica are ready to sell Alex Grimaldo for a cut-price fee this summer.

Magpies boss Eddie Howe has a new left-back on his wanted list and Matt Targett is an option. He impressed while on loan from Aston Villa and Howe would like him on board. However alternatives are needed should a deal fail to happen.

And Grimaldo is one such option. The problem for Newcastle is they are not the only ones interested. Reports in Portuguese publication A Bola say Juventus have also entered the running.

The Italian giants are said to have “asked for information” on the 26-year-old. He has just one year remaining on his current contract and is unlikely to see it out.

This is because of a fall-out with Benfica, who are ready to move him on. Fellow Portuguese outlet O Jogo say Benfica are keen to sell. Not only that, they will let him go for a “cut-price fee”.

O Jogo say there is a behavioural issue that Benfica are not happy with. But they also say it is not a big enough issue to deter Newcastle from making a move.

Juventus could be Newcastle’s biggest threat. They are after a new left-back as Alex Sandro looks to be on the move. The Old Lady will step up their efforts and Grimaldo could struggle to say no.

But the chance to play in England will be just as tempting. Grimaldo has options in the Premier League as well. A Bola suggest that Arsenal are also sniffing around and could make a move. They suggest a bidding was between all three clubs is on the cards.

That will be good news for Benfica, not so Newcastle. Despite their riches they are looking to be shrewd in the transfer market this summer.

It is claimed that Benfica are looking for anything between £13million to £17million. That should suit Newcastle if they can fight off the competition.

Alex Grimaldo a good alternative to Targett

Targett appears to be the preferred option for Howe. He proved himself after arriving from Villa in the second half of the season. Howe recently described him as “outstanding” and suggested he would be pursuing a permanent deal.

However that still has to be hammered out with Villa. Early reports suggest Targett will be made available but until it is done the Magpies have to keep an eye on the market.

Newcastle could also face competition. Wolves, Leicester and Leeds have also been linked with Targett.

If they do miss out for one reason or another then Grimaldo looks a great alternative. In 47 appearances for Benfica last season he scored six goals and provided nine assists.

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