NEWCASTLE United are set to table a final ‘take-it-or-leave-it’ offer to Watford for Adrian Mariappa.
United were poised to make the final offer to the Hornets yesterday afternoon, but they do not believe that Watford’s £4million valuation is a reasonable price for a player who has never played above the Championship.
United rate Mariappa nearer the £2.5million mark and are ready to walk away from the deal if Watford continue to hold out for more.
Watford were scathing in their reaction to Newcastle’s original offer for the 25-year-old, who can play at either centre-back or full-back, and were set to include Mariappa in their squad to face Spurs in the FA Cup fourth round tonight. The player is understood to favour a move to the North East.
Newcastle want defensive cover for Fabricio Coloccini and Mike Williamson but, with Steven Taylor set to return in the final weeks of the season, they see no sense in breaking the bank to bring in another defender on big wages.
United are also interested in FC Twente’s Douglas and were pondering a bid for him earlier this week but he remains a more likely summer target for the Magpies. They also turned down the chance to take 30-year-old St Etienne defender Sylvain Monsoreau this week.
The Journal understands that there is also unlikely to be a move for Crystal Palace duo Wilfried Zaha and Nathaniel Clyne before the end of January. Full-back Clyne is still seen as one for the future, while Newcastle will need to clear out other strikers before turning to Zaha, a confirmed target.