Bafetimbi Gomis' agent has warned Newcastle United not to wait until next summer to make another attempt to sign the France forward.
The Magpies had hoped to strike a deal for Gomis in the last transfer window, but were unable to negotiate an acceptable price with Lyon.
With Loic Remy on loan until the end of the season, when Gomis’ contract expires it would be no surprise if the Magpies were to go back in for the player then. As well as not having to pay a transfer fee, they would also not need to negotiate with Lyon president Jean-Michel Aulas, something they found difficult.
But the 28-year-old’s agent, Francesco Di Frisco, has predicted a cut-price move to the Premier League before that.
The Italian media had linked Gomis with a move to Rome this winter – Lazio and Roma were both linked – but Di Frisco has suggested Wales could be a more realistic destination if Newcastle do not act.
“I’ve recently been talking to both (Roma director of football Walter) Sabatini and (Lazio technical co-ordinator Igli) Tare, and they told me Bafé is not among their main names on tabs,” he said.
“He’s instead near to join the Premier League, we are in talks with several clubs. His €2.5m (£2.1m) transfer fee gives a big advantage to English clubs.”
The main stumbling block to Gomis’ summer arrival was thought to be haggling over the fee, with Aulas valuing the player at £7m, but in September the striker revealed Newcastle had reneged on their initial wage offer when they accepted they would have to pay more for his services.
“I had a talk with Newcastle’s coach (Alan Pardew) and we found an agreement,” Gomis revealed. “Then there were talks with Lyon and then there was a first offer that was refused, and then a second one, which was accepted.
“Newcastle then came back to me and asked me to make an effort on wages, but I never asked (for) anything as it was my club that wanted to transfer me. So the effort had to be made by Newcastle or Lyon.”
Negotiations with Gomis’ representatives only added to the difficulty of the deal. The matter became increasingly acrimonious, with Aulas venting his frustration on Twitter.
He was unhappy that Gomis was “unsettled” by all the transfer talk.
The lion’s share of the blame went to Marseille, whom he accused of trying to hijack the deal, but he also said: “Newcastle broke the discussions and there were no other offers.”
The Magpies may therefore be reluctant to revive the deal while Gomis is still under contract at Stade de Gerland.
But the better Remy performs for them, the less likely that he will be at St James’ Park next season.
There is no automatic deal in place to make his season-long loan from Queens Park Rangers permanent.
With seven goals in his nine appearances for the club, Newcastle would be well advised to put that right, but rape charges hanging over the player make that more difficult.
Every goal Remy scores makes his a more attractive option to rival clubs with the wherewithal to outbid them.
With Papiss Cisse struggling to recover the form of his debut season, the Magpies may have little choice but to go back into the market for a striker next summer. They showed with Remy they do not hold previous rejections against players.
The striker could have joined Newcastle in January, but opted for QPR instead.
Cardiff are in need of a proven goalscorer, with Steven Caulker, Jordan Mutch and Fraizer Campbell their joint top-scorer this season with two Premier League goals. Swansea’s £12m summer signing Wilfried Bony is into double figures for his new club, but only four have come in the league.
Gomis has scored once this season, and has not played for his country since June.
A January move could improve his chances of playing at next year’s World Cup after France overcame a 2-0 aggregate deficit to beat Ukraine in Tuesday’s play-off.
United’s Yohan Cabaye and Mathieu Debuchy both started the game, which Les Bleus won 3-0.