Steve Bruce’s Newcastle United have picked just five points from their first six league games, and have scored just four goals in the process.
The manager is desperate to add a quality winger to his side, an issue that was not solved in the summer transfer window, and reports from Gol Digital have given them a boost in their pursuit of one Rony Lopes.
Having played just over 40 minutes for Sevilla this season, Lopes is currently unsettled in Spain under Julen Lopetegui, and the report claims that the winger will be allowed to leave the club in January.
So is he a player Bruce should make a move for?
Lopes – fact file
Having spent more than a couple of years at the Manchester City academy, where he played in a few domestic cup games, Lopes was always regarded as a bright prospect from Portugal.
His best season came a couple of years ago, where he mustered 15 goals and five assists in 32 Ligue 1 starts for Monaco.
But he failed to replicate that form last season and joined Sevilla just this August in a £22m deal, in search of a new challenge.
However, since Lopetegui took charge of the La Liga outfit, Lopes has been an outsider and was not even named in the 18-man squad for four of their league games this season.
A versatile attacker who is at his best on the left side of the attack line, Lopes also has a couple of caps for the Portugal national side and at 23, fits the profile of the recruitment policy under Mike Ashley.
Why Newcastle should make a move for Lopes
Lopes has been on Newcastle’s radar for almost a year now, with the English clubs often sending scouts to keep an eye on him.
Bruce is also interested in Hull City star Jarrod Bowen but Lopes is a more established option, who would solve an impending problem at the club.
Known for his immaculate set-piece delivery and his ability to put in dangerous crosses consistently, the 23-year-old is a hard-working winger, who would fit Bruce’s style of play.
Lopes is adept at dropping deep and helping the full-back, while his vision and technique allow him to dictate play on the counter.
He can play on either wing or in a no.10 role, and that would leave Bruce with plenty of options to field a side that can get the better of even the best teams in the Premier League.
The sale of Ayoze Perez should be able to fund Lopes’ arrival. He would add more balance to the attack, and for the price mentioned, signing him is a no brainer.