Tuesday, September 26

Transfer Centre

Rafael Benitez discusses Lucas Perez move with Arsene Wenger

Rafael Benitez has asked Arsene Wenger about the availability of Lucas Perez, but hints that he is only interested in a loan move for the Spanish striker.

Newcastle United manager Rafael Benitez has confirmed that discussions have begun with Arsenal over the purchase of out-of-favour striker Lucas Perez.

The 57-year-old has been left frustrated in his attempt to bring in some much-needed quality in attack following his side's promotion from the Championship in 2016-17.

Among those targeted by Benitez to bolster his striking ranks is Arsenal outcast Perez, who has so far been priced out of a move away from North London despite plenty of interest.

It has been reported that the Gunners are holding out for around £14m for the Spaniard, but Newcastle would rather take the player on loan as they are seemingly short on cash.

Outlining discussions he has held with Wenger, Benitez told reporters: "I said: 'Listen, we have to talk.' And he said: 'Do you have some money?' Obviously, we like good players, but it's too soon to talk about that."

Fenerbahce and former club Deportivo La Coruna are the other two clubs understood to be in the running to sign Perez, who was restricted to just the one start in his maiden Premier League campaign.

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