Newcastle United are confident they will push through a move for QPR striker Loic Remy in the next 48 hours.
The Journal understands that Remy is the closest of United’s three targets and senior sources at the club are hopeful of pushing through a deal before the Rangers game – possibly even today.
A loan fee and terms with the player have been agreed and United will return to QPR to clinch the temporary switch today.
It is understood that the slight delay was down to Newcastle seeking further assurances from the player that he favoured a move to Tyneside over other options that had emerged over the last seven days.
They have now received them and Remy, who was left out of QPR’s squad to face Sheffield Wednesday on Saturday, should move to Newcastle.
Joe Kinnear delivered an upbeat message as he returned to public view yesterday, confirming Remy was “very, very close” although he was less optimistic about Bafetimbi Gomis - admitting the deal had become complicated.
There were bullish noises from United’s director of football as he spoke for the first about the three transfer targets that have been the focus of his attentions since he was appointed.
As he made his return to the public arena for the first time for several weeks, he also told Sky TV that the Darren Bent deal could still happen while the Bafetimbi Gomis pursuit is becoming “complicated”.
On Gomis, the deal is now at a critical stage despite claims from France that it may take another “eight days” to push through.
On Remy, Kinnear claimed: “I would like to think we’re very, very close to achieving that. I would think that by maybe Monday or Tuesday, we would be in a position to say yes or no.
“I’m very happy with how that deal is going at the moment. I’ve been to QPR and spoken to the people who represent him (Remy), and in my opinion there is every chance that the deal could take
place.” He also said that Newcastle retained an interest in Bent, with an offer made direct to Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert at the end of last week.
Kinnear claimed Newcastle were in a “war” with regard to their move for Gomis. He said: “We have agreed that deal on numerous occasions, but it’s a very difficult situation at the moment because from one day to the next the goalposts are moved. There’s always extra add-ons, there’s always another problem, and there’s always the problem of competition from other teams.
“Whatever I’ve offered that always goes public, so that alerts other teams that are interested in him.
“We’re in a war at the moment where whatever I do someone comes in and bids above it. We’re fighting hard. It’s a battle we need to win, and we’re very close to achieving that.”
Lyon’s president Jean-Michel Aulas continues to offer precious little clarity. After saying the deal was agreed on Friday, he appeared to row back in Sunday morning’s dispatch to L’Equipe .
“We have accepted Newcastle’s conditions and Bafetimbi has accepted theirs too. It could still go wrong. There are minor issues which could cause problems,” he said.
“Either way, the deal won’t be done for another eight days probably.”