In the last few days, Alan Pardew has named two striking targets that Newcastle are interested in both Loic Remy and Darren Bent, who are both available for transfer. He has also stressed the importance of signing two strikers so these two could soon be plying their trade in the North East. Remy is reported to be available for a fee around £7M which will activate his release clause after QPR’s relegation, but he turned down the Magpies in January so Mike Ashley may prefer to go after other targets. Bent has been frozen out of the Aston Villa team and he will be sold if a club meet Aston Villa’s valuation which is dropping by the day. An offer around £5M should be enough to get the England International, his wages will be the main stumbling block if the deal is to go through.
Papiss Cisse struggled last season while only managing to score 8 goals despite playing the second half of the season as the main striker after Ba’s exit. Remy scored 6 goals in a struggling QPR, which came every 198 minutes which is far superior than Cisse who scored every 376 minutes. The Frenchman has a good shooting accuracy of 61% and a clear cut chance conversion rate of 71% which is hugely impressive in his first stint in England. Its far better than Cisse who only managed a shooting accuracy of 41% which is very poor for a striker and his clear cut chance conversion was 22%. The QPR player would be a good addition to the Newcastle squad with his goal scoring ability, furthermore his versatility will allow Pardew to use him on the left of a front three.
Despite being out of favour with Paul Lambert, Bent still had some impressive stats from the time he got on the pitch last season. He only managed 3 league goals but they came at 268 minutes apiece which is better than Newcastle’s Senegalese number 9. His shooting accuracy was a respectable 47% given his lack of playing time. His clear cut chance conversion rate was a very healthy 50% which shows he still has the ability at the top level if he is given the starts. The problem with Bent is that he is too similar in playing style to Papiss Cisse so its unlikely they will form a good partnership.
Both of these players would have to win around the Toon Army due to their history with the club. Remy was on the verge of joining in January before joining QPR with the general view being he was motivated by money. Bent is not popular on Tyneside due to his past with close neighbours Sunderland. Although both players could win the fans around with goals and hard work in a black and white shirt. Remy should be regarded as the main target as he has the ability to form a partnership with Cisse and he would be willing to play on the left, something Ba and Cisse didn’t enjoy. Bent’s Premier League experience would make him a good signing but he would be in direct competition with Cisse so first team opportunities could be hard to get.
Newcastle need to start making a move in the transfer market or they could face a similar situation to last year where time ran out for them to acquire their main targets. If they get both of these strikers, their squad will look stronger and a top half place would be within their grasp.