The Frenchman popped up on Newcastle’s transfer radar initially in January but they were unable to snare him away from Reims despite pushing for a move.


Newcastle knocked on the Ligue 1 side’s door for Ekitike again this summer and they managed to reach an agreement with them over a move for the striker



However, the Magpies are yet to seal a swoop for the 20-year-old because he is still seeking assurances over game time next term while the commission for his agents is not finalised.


Ekitike’s agents are also aware of interest in their client from other clubs and they are still open to approaches from elsewhere, which has also been a cause for Newcastle to get increasingly frustrated.



And the Tyneside giants have started to actively identify alternative options for Ekitike, as a move for him remains up in the air.


Newcastle are determined to not pay over the odds for any of their targets in the ongoing window and they want to have back up options if their swoop for Ekitike falls through.



At present Ekitike remains Newcastle’s top target and they have not given up their hopes of bringing him to St James’ Park.