Newcastle United boss Rafael Benitez's praise of Peter Crouch

Newcastle manager Rafael Benitez

Newcastle United boss Rafael Benitez linked up with Stoke City forward Peter Crouch during his time at Liverpool.

Stoke City's Peter Crouch reacts

Newcastle United have recently been linked with a move for Stoke City striker Peter Crouch (The Sun), and from Magpies boss Rafael Benitez’s comments in previous years - it is no surprise to see the Tynesiders lining up a deal for the rangy striker.

Benitez worked with Crouch at Liverpool earlier in their respective careers, before he ended up selling the striker to Portsmouth.

However, this sale did not reflect upon Benitez’s opinion on Crouch.

Rafael Benitez - Liverpool Manager and Peter Crouch

To the contrary, Benitez’s comments back in 2008 - prove just how big a fan of Crouch he is.

“It was a pity to lose him,” Benitez admitted to the Liverpool Echo, after the forward moved to Pompey.

“We offered him a new contract, but at the end of the day he decided to go to another club where he can play every week.

“It was difficult for Peter to play here every week, but he is a nice lad, a good professional and we wish him the best in the future.

“It is clear that he is big, he is good in the air and he is a player with quality.”

Picture Supplied by Action Images *** Local Caption *** 2007-02-10T175625Z_01_NEW10_RTRIDSP_3_SOCCER-ENGLAND-NEWCASTLE-LIVERPOOL.jpg

Newcastle are reportedly targeting Crouch, as they look to further strengthen their front line.

The Magpies already have brought in Dwight Gayle from Crystal Palace this summer, but Crouch’s arrival would add experience to the group.

Crouch has struggled for first-team appearances at Stoke City lately, meaning that he could be up for sale.

Newcastle are currently the heavy favourites to win promotion from the Championship next term.

Stoke City's Peter Crouch in action with Crystal Palace's Damien Delaney

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