Newcastle United are reportedly in the market for new forwards this summer, with Rafa Benitez identifying the Magpies’ attacking output as a key weakness last term, despite their impressive 10th place finish.
The Spaniard is allegedly keen on Venezuela international Salomon Rondon and could offer him a route back into the Premier League, from the recently relegated West Brom, according to the Northern Echo.
However, the 28-year-old may not be the best option to spearhead the side at St James’ Park.
Rondon has failed to bag more than 10 goals in a domestic season since arriving from Zenit St Petersburg, while his 28 strikes in 120 games makes for pretty poor reading.
It goes without saying stats are not everything, but Newcastle will need a reliable scorer to ensure safety, and perhaps he is not worth the risk.
Strangely, Benitez seems reluctant to recall former fan favourite Aleksandar Mitrovic despite his recent resurgence, and is pursuing other targets that employ a similar game to the Serbian.
On loan in the Championship last term Mitrovic regained his confidence and eye for goal, and he was pivotal in Fulham’s push for promotion, netting an impressive 12 goals in 11 games for the Cottagers in a period he described as “the best four months of my career”.
The former Anderlecht man seems to have curbed his disciplinary issues and simplified his game up top, with his link-up play representing some of the finest in world football last term. And the time could be perfect for his return to Tyneside.
It is evident from rumours surrounding Rondon and Sporting Lisbon talisman Bas Dost (Marca), that Benitez is actively seeking a physical linchpin to orchestrate play in the final third and Mitrovic could be his best option.
Newcastle are not famed for their spending in transfer markets and they have a ready-made solution returning to the club imminently.
Benitez should reevaluate his current pursuits and give Mitrovic one last chance. On last season’s evidence, the results could be brilliant.