In an interview with The Chronicle, former Newcastle left back Olivier Bernard has backed the club's reported pursuit of Marseille forward Andre Ayew.
Bernard played in excess of 100 games for Newcastle over a five-year spell with the club, becoming a firm fan's favourite at St. James' Park.
Now, the Frenchman has spoken to The Chronicle about Newcastle's alleged bid to sign Marseille forward Ayew on a free transfer at the end of the season.
According to French website Le10 Sport, Newcastle are looking to sign the Ghanaian international this summer in a bid to inject some more quality to the front line.
Bernard says that Ayew, 25, would offer some more experience and leadership to the Newcastle side, and would be a hit on Tyneside for his ability to score goals.
"After Fabricio Coloccini was sent off at Everton, Newcastle looked lost. There’s not many players with the authority and influence to stand up and be counted at Newcastle, so they need them in the summer," said Bernard.
"Ayew is one of those kind of players. He could walk into the club and take the armband with no worries whatsoever. He is a powerful player and I’m delighted that Newcastle are looking at it him as a potential summer signing – bringing him in would be the right sort of move."
"I do think Ayew would be an instant hit in England. He can score goals, he’s powerful and he also has the kind of physicality that would mean it wouldn’t take him too long to adapt. He’s one of the better players in France and if he’s available, Newcastle should really work hard to try and bring him in," he added.
Ayew has hit 56 goals in 185 games for Marseille, but will be out of contract at the end of this season - meaning Newcastle would be able to sign him for free, barring a surprise u-turn from Ayew in the coming weeks over his contract at Marseille.
It's rare that players as with as much ability as Ayew become available on a free transfer, and whilst a number of clubs will surely be looking to sign him, he would certainly be a coup for the Magpies.