Photo by Tony McArdle/Everton FC via Getty Images

Report: Newcastle hold key advantage in race to sign 29-year-old, talks planned

According to the Northern Echo, Newcastle United hold a significant advantage in any race to sign Joshua King this summer.

King is likely to be a sought-after target in the off-season transfer window after leaving Everton as a free agent. The Toffees elected against offering the Norwegian an extension to the six-month contract signed upon his mid-season arrival from Bournemouth.

He struggled to establish himself at Goodison Park under Carlo Ancelotti, making all 11 of his appearances from the bench. King also failed to score a single goal or offer an assist, and only played six minutes over the final five games of the Premier League season.

Photo by Tony McArdle/Everton FC via Getty Images

Newcastle hope to capitalise on Everton releasing King to reunite the 29-year-old with Callum Wilson and Ryan Fraser. The Toon duo moved to Tyneside last summer following Bournemouth’s relegation, while King was denied a move to West Ham.

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United are expected to open negotiations with King and his representatives over a move to Tyneside within weeks. Steve Bruce is working to refresh his attacking options on a restricted budget with Mike Ashley putting up limited funds.

But the Magpies will face rival interest from the Premier League and abroad. The prospect of remaining in England also appeals to King. However, Newcastle hold a significant advantage in any race for the 54-cap international’s signature.

King is represented by the ROGON agency which also looks after Joelinton and worked on the Brazilian’s move to United. They also have a strong relationship with the Magpies’ Head of Recruitment Steve Nickson, which will aid any pursuit of the Manchester United product.

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Newcastle are keen to acquire King with the forward a potential free signing as he has proven Premier League ability. He offered 48 goals and 15 assists in 161 top-flight games with Bournemouth, while playing a variety of positions under Eddie Howe.

His time at Everton was a disaster and King will now be itching to prove any doubters wrong. Newcastle would find it hard to pass up on his signing, knowing what he can offer alongside Fraser and Wilson. The trio formed a fluid and productive unit on the south coast.

Signing King could also see Newcastle get more out of Fraser, who endured a difficult debut season on Tyneside. Wilson hit the ground running and ended the Premier League campaign as United’s top-scorer, but the Scottish winger featured for just 927 minutes.

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