Journalist Ben Jacobs has claimed that Newcastle United are confident of advancing their talks with Kalidou Koulibaly.
It appears very clear that despite a reported £60m transfer budget, Newcastle, PIF and Eddie Howe are all very keen to add at least one centre-back to their squad, with the likes of Sven Botman, Benoit Badiashile and Amos Pieper all linked.
However, someone that’s not been mentioned, aside from in relation to clubs fighting it out for the Champions League, is Napoli ace Koulibaly, who has been plying his trade out in Naples for eight seasons, but now 30, it appears his future is up in the air.
Speaking on The Done Deal Show, Jacobs believes that Newcastle are certainly confident they can advance in talks with the defender this summer.
Would you like Newcastle to sign Koulibaly?
He said: “I think Newcastle are in the mix, for sure, for Koulibaly and are confident of progressing those talks – at least to try and agree a deal with the player. But the challenge with Koulibaly is twofold: one, that Napoli just don’t really want to sell; and two, the level of interest from other clubs in the mix.”
TIF Thoughts on Newcastle’s interest in Koulibaly…
Interestingly, Erling Haaland even stated that Koulibaly was one of the three ‘best’ defenders in the world back in late 2020.
This would certainly be a rather left-field signing for Newcastle as the defender hasn’t been mentioned in transfer talks, but as The Athletic reported, Newcastle have a ‘flexible’ approach to transfers this summer and will look at any deal if one looks right for them.
Therefore, despite Koulibaly being 30 and having never played in the Premier League, the Magpies could take inspiration from how Thiago Silva has done at Chelsea and helped them to Champions League glory by signing someone with plenty of top-level experience.