Leicester City striker Islam Slimani was not among Newcastle United’s top three transfer targets for the striker position over the January transfer window, according to Sky Sports.
Sky Sports claim in a detailed analysis of the Magpies’ season on their website that the Algerian striker was indeed identified as a potential option to help bolster their front line but, despite eventually arriving on a season long loan, there were other preferred options ahead of him.
It is said that manager Rafael Benitez is frustrated with the club’s transfer dealings in the winter window and that their deadline day deal for Slimani was their “fourth or fifth choice”, highlighting the struggles faced by the north east club.
Slimani was one of three arrivals at St James’ Park during January, with Kenedy and Martin Dubravka also joining on loan from Chelsea and Sparta Prague respectively, although Benitez is reportedly frustrated that it took so long for deals to be completed.
Slimani is yet to make his debut for the Magpies after arriving with a slight thigh injury suffered while at Leicester, while Dubravka made the bench for the club’s 1-1 draw against Crystal Palace last weekend.
However they could both make their first appearances for the club in front of the Toon Army when they play host to Manchester United on Sunday.