Rafa Benitez is looking to strengthen his defensive options ahead of the new season and has identified Valencia defender Aymen Abdennour as one of his targets.
According to French outlet Foot Mercato, the Newcastle United manager wants to sign the Valencia centre back this summer.
Abdennour was very highly rated during his time at Monaco but the move to Valencia has not gone according to plan for the Tunisian international.
The 27 year old started just 9 league games last season and Valencia are thought to be open to a sale. However, the La Liga outfit have slapped a £13million asking price on his head.
As per the report, Everton are keen on the defender as well.
Benitez already has Clark and Lascelles at his disposal but the likes of Mbemba have failed to impress last season and Hanley is expected to leave this summer. Therefore, signing another centre back is imperative for the Magpies.
Abdennour is clearly a very talented player and Benitez is good enough to get the best out of him. The Spaniard has always excelled at coaching defenders and the Valencia centre back needs someone like Benitez to help get his career back on track right now.
It will be interesting to see whether Newcastle agree to meet Valencia’s demands for the player now.
Although, £13million is not excessive for a club like Newcastle in this market, Abdennour is unwanted by his parent club and therefore any buyer would like to sign him for a lesser fee.
Also, the Tunisian international is open to a transfer away from Valencia and that will drive the price down as well.