Newcastle United appear to have missed the boat over long-term target Andreas Samaris, who has signed a new contract with Benfica.
The Magpies were first linked with the Greece international in 2017, with The Mirror reporting at the time that Rafa Benitez was eyeing a £17.5 million move.
In January of this year Newcastle were linked again, with The Telegraph claiming the club were actually closing in on a loan deal along with Antonio Barreca.
A move never materialised though and it only the Italian full-back and Miguel Almiron were signed.
Samaris is a popular figure at Benfica, and fans were delighted by the news of his extension amid so many previous exit links.
It looks as though Newcastle will now have to turn their attentions elsewhere for midfield reinforcements.
Samaris would have been an ideal acquisition at St. James’ Park this summer, with Isaac Hayden likely to leave and Mo Diame and Jonjo Shelvey’s future’s unclear.
The 29-year-old is a towering defensive midfield player who would have provided some steel in the engine room for the Magpies.