The sensational form of youngster Ayoze Perez was never likely to last for Newcastle, but with the Magpies now looking towards European qualification for next term, should the club bring in striking reinforcements in January?
Any number of ambitious targets have been linked with a move to St James’ Park of late with Lyon’s Alexandre Lacazette the most prominent, but the Magpies could well be better served by looking towards a cheaper and arguably more realistic mid-season target.
Jonathan Soriano may not be the young, flashy forward fans have been dreaming of but the one thing the 29-year-old has seemingly guaranteed of late is goals.
The former Barcelona B team star was linked with a move to Newcastle United over the summer, following an impressive campaign that saw him finish as top scorer in the Europa League with Red Bull Salzburg thanks to an eight-goal tally.
That included one memorable near half-way-line strike against Ajax in the knockout stages of the competition that sent Salzburg on their way to a memorable victory over the Dutch giants in the knockout phase of the tournament.
But while the Magpies ultimately moved for Emmanuel Riviere ahead of the start of the season, Soriano has gone on to show that last season’s prolific campaign was far from a fluke.
In 15 Austrian Bundesliga appearances this term, the Spaniard has scored 17 times, while the goals have continued to flow in the Europe, where Soriano has netted seven times in eight appearances – including a fine strike against Celtic in the group phase of the Europa League.
The former Espanyol forward was in the thick of the action again over the weekend, scoring a crucial goal for Salzburg in a 2-1 win over rivals Sturm Graz that kept the Red Bull-backed club on course for another title.
Already heading through to the knockout stages of the Europa League, the 29-year-old would undoubtedly relish the chance to prove himself in the Premier League at the apparent peak of his powers.
And with Newcastle lacking prolific goalscoring options at present, the striker – who is also adept from dead-ball situations – could be the ideal addition with the transfer fee likely to be no higher than £5 million if previous rumours are to be believed.
Recruit the Spaniard and Europa League football could come back to Newcastle next term. Who knows? If the sides around the Magpies remain as inconsistent as they have been this term, there may even be talk of Champions League come the end of the season.