Newcastle United could be set to capitalise on Premier League rivals Leicester City’s woes and raid the club for their most coveted asset, James Maddison, this summer as the Foxes scramble against the threat of relegation.
What’s the latest on James Maddison to Newcastle?
According to The Telegraph, the high-flying Magpies are preparing for a busy summer and set to rekindle their move for Foxes phenom Maddison this summer, having failed in their pursuit of the playmaker one year ago.
Last summer, manager Eddie Howe attempted to sign the 26-year-old with a £50m bid but failed to meet the £60m valuation which still stands, enquiring unsuccessfully once more during the winter transfer window.
City are 18th in the top-flight with three matches to play and could plummet into the second division, which would all but confirm Maddison’s departure from the King Power Stadium, with Newcastle poised to pounce.
How would Maddison do at Newcastle?
PIF have enjoyed much success since the £300m takeover of the Tyneside giants in October 2021, swiftly appointing Howe as manager and lifting the club from the pit of the Premier League towards prominence, securing a comfortable mid-table finish before ascending to Champions League contention this term.
Indeed, Newcastle reside in third with just four matches to play, three points ahead of fifth-placed Liverpool, who have played an additional fixture.
The signings made over the past three transfer windows have been transformative and adding a creative midfielder of Maddison’s ilk could ice the cake and cement this remarkable newfound stature.
Having signed for Leicester from Norwich City for £24m in 2018, Maddison has played 200 matches and scored 55 goals and served 41 assists, crucial in the gleaning of the FA Cup and Community Shield.
However, the outfit’s fortunes have taken a dramatic turn and now relegation from the Premier League could become reality in a matter of weeks, despite the best efforts of the £110k-per-week menace.
As per Sofascore, the two-cap England international has recorded a remarkable average rating of 7.4 in the league this term, scoring ten goals, providing nine assists and averaging 2.9 shots and 2.5 key passes per match, assured with his 80% passing accuracy and tenacious with 1.6 tackles per outing.
Ranking among the top 8% of midfielders across Europe’s top five leagues for rate of goals, as per FBref, the top 4% for rate of assists and the top 10% for progressive passes per 90, Maddison is clearly one of the foremost creative talents around, and could spark excitement into Toon hearts at a level scarcely seen since infamous midfield wizard Hatem Ben Arfa graced the St. James’ Park pitch.
The Frenchman signed for Alan Pardew’s United in January 2011 after converting a loan move to a permanent deal, alighting English football with his defence-splitting weaving runs and sorcery with the ball at his feet, with Pardew hailing the mercurial ace as a “maverick” who has the “x-factor”.
The cult hero scored five goals and six assists from just 16 starts in his first full season in the Premier League, but failed to display the discipline to parallel his brilliant natural prowess with a football, making an unsuccessful loan move to Hull City in 2014 and subsequently ending his career in England.
Maddison holds much of that same flair and guile, hailed as a “monster” by journalist Josh Bunting, but has exhibited his own prowess with sustained, trophy-winning performances across multiple seasons, and could be the heir to Ben Arfa’s throne in Newcastle to truly send the city into deafening rapture.