Report: Newcastle United make approach for Napoli's Rafael Cabral, previously signed by Benitez

Rafael Benitez, Manager of Newcastle United looks on prior to the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Tottenham Hotspur at St. James Park on August 13, 2017 in Newcastle upon...

Rafael Benitez knows Rafael Cabral well from his time at Napoli and a reunion at Newcastle United may be a possibility.

Newcastle United’s exasperating transfer window is perhaps summed up by their failure to add a new goalkeeper to their ranks.

Manager Rafael Benitez had hoped to have a new number one in place before the Premier League season kicked off but Rob Elliot started between the sticks in last week’s 2-0 home defeat to Tottenham Hotspur.

Meanwhile, Tim Krul and Karl Darlow (below), who are both up for sale this summer, remain on the club’s books with deals for countless shot-stoppers coming to nothing so far.

Karl Darlow of Newcastle United celebrates saving a penalty during the Sky Bet Championship match between Nottingham Forest and Newcastle United at City Ground on December 2, 2016 in...

Yet, according to Italian publication Tuttomercatoweb, there is now another name on Newcastle’s wishlist – a player Benitez knows well from his time in charge of Napoli in Serie A.

The report claims that The Magpies have made an approach for three-time Brazil international Rafael Cabral, a goalkeeper who arrived at the Stadio San Paolo from Santos in 2013 when Benitez was still at the helm.

Rafael spent his debut season at the club as the second-choice glovesman but featured far more regularly during 2014/15, Benitez’s final campaign at Napoli. He featured 23 times in Serie A but struggled to convince, making a number of high-profile errors.

Yet, with Rafael making just two appearances in the two years since Benitez departed the Italian South Coast, Tuttomercatoweb reports that Napoli are determined to sell this summer.

SSC Napoli goalkeeper Cabral Barbosa Rafael celebrates the victory after the Serie A match between SS Lazio and SSC Napoli at Stadio Olimpico on January 18, 2015 in Rome, Italy.

However, reports of an approach from Newcastle appears particularly uninspiring. It is clear that Rafael was not exactly high on the club’s wishlist and he appears to be little more than an affordable, convenient target.

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