Roma have been linked with Newcastle’s Gini Wijnaldum for some time now, although their preference to replace recently sold Miralem Pjanic to Juventus is Real Madrid midfielder Mateo Kovacic.
They wanted to take Mateo on loan in a bid to reduce their exposure on a player who has not done well in Madrid, after being signed last summer while Rafa Benitez was the Real manager.
Gini Wijnaldum – available for £30M?
Roma are flush with cash having received £25M for Pjanic and there has been news they are now ready to meet with Newcastle this week – but we doubt that news is accurate.
In fact Gini’s agent Humphrey Nijman said yesterday that a deal is far from being competed:
“There has been no progress in negotiations,” “There is no new news.”
Roma have been told by Real Madrid that Kovacic is available only for a straight transfer and the fee is €30M which Roma think is too much.
The news out of Newcastle is that Rafa wants as much as £30M for Wijnaldum, so we have to think Roma will think that is too much too.
But Roma today have said they are willing to take Gini on loan with an option to buy – similar to what they wanted to do with Kovacic.
That wouldn’t be a good deal for Newcastle, because we’d get nothing up front for him – just get his wages off the wage bill – so no money to buy a replacement with.
Newcastle may consider loaning the player out and taking him back next summer, when hopefully we are back in the Premier League but we don’t think Rafa would consider that either.
We’ll just have to wait and see what happens, but there are other clubs interested in Gini including Napoli, Everton and West Ham.
The Premier League clubs, especially Everton may be more willing to cough up a big fee for the Dutch International.
And it’s going to take that to get Wijnaldum, with Rafa Benitez willing to play hardball and wanting to keep the 25 year-old on Tyneside as he builds up his squad for future success.
Rafa will sell only if he gets big money for Wijnaldum that he can then invest in new players coming into the club this summer.
Sounds good to us.