Toon chase highly-rated Austrian centre-half.
Newcastle are leading the chase to sign FC Basel defender Aleksandar Dragovic.
Alan Pardew is keen to sign another central defender when the transfer window re-opens and reports in Swiss newspaper Blick claim he is lining up a £5million offer for the 21-year-old.
Dragovic has also attracted interest from Fiorentina and Stuttgart but he would be tempted by a lucrative move into the Premier League.
The Austrian international has a contract with Basel until June 2015 and the Swiss club will not allow him to leave him unless a sizeable offer is made.
Newcastle boss Alan Pardew could well have a busier January than most Premier League managers.
The mid-season transfer window is traditionally quiet, with top European clubs reluctant to part with their key men or unsettle their squads with a glut of new faces.
But Pardew is already facing the prospect of having to replace star striker Demba Ba, who has admitted he is unsettled on Tyneside and, at £7m, will have a host of suitors in the new year.
The Toon manager might also face bids for the likes of Hatem Ben Arfa and Yohan Cabaye, who are enjoying enjoying impressive seasons in the Magpies midfield.
But, after a modest summer in which Vernon Anita was the only first-team acquisition and Pardew missed out on top-targets Luuk de Jong and Mathieu Debuchy, the club will also be looking to buy in January.
Debuchy will no doubt be targeted again, as might young Austrian defender Dragovic. The 21-year-old is already highly experienced for his age, after breaking into the national team at just 18.
Newcastle’s European scouting team, fronted by Graham Carr, have proved themselves time and again in recent seasons. Could Dragovic be another gem?
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