Rafa Benitez has one week after the final match of the season to decide whether he wants to buy Christian Atsu.

The 25 year old winger will complete his season on loan at St James Park on Sunday 7 May when United host Barnsley.

ESPN report that sources close to the player have confirmed that Newcastle then have a seven day period to choose whether to take up the permanent deal option that was part of the loan arrangement.

Christian Atsu joined Chelsea for £3.5m four years ago from Porto and the agreed fee for Newcastle is said by ESPN to be £6.5m, with the player’s personal terms having already been agreed at the start of the loan period.

Atsu is just one of numerous players recruited by Chelsea who hasn’t played a single game for them.

Whilst there are claims that the West London club could offer him a new contract, that is surely wide of the mark.

He clearly is never going to get a chance for Conte’s side and with now just one year remaining of his five season deal, he looks definitely to be on his way, whether that is Newcastle or elsewhere.

St James Park has been his fifth loan destination since joining the blues and if he is ever going to get his career going properly, Christian Atsu needs a place he can call home.

Whether that should be Newcastle United is a subject of some debate amongst fans – he has shown some moments of quality but others would say these are few and far between with the player flattering to deceive. Atsu scoring four goals and grabbing three assists in the Championship for Newcastle.

Rafa Benitez has only given him 13 starts in the Championship, six in 2016 and seven after the turn of the year, whilst he has also came off the bench 17 times in the league.

Difficult to see that when he can’t get a game ahead of Yoan Gouffran in the second tier, Atsu is somehow going to become a first team regular in the Premier League.

He did have some injury problems but in 18 months at Premier League Everton and Bournemouth on loan, Christian Atsu only started one game in the top tier.

He turns 26 in January and has only made 76 league starts in his entire career, making more first elevens for Ghana than any club he has been at so far.

With three starts in the last seven matches including Monday’s win over Preston when he scored the second goal, if Rafa has any serious interest in signing Christian Atsu permanently then you would think he must be going to play him against both Cardiff and Barnsley.

  • Alex

    We need to set our sights higher.

  • Soldier

    Can`t see it happening, if it was £3m he`d be ok as a squad player but at double that no

  • Wor Lass

    When he first arrived he looked like a good prospect and seemed capble of making an impact in games but, as time went on, he became less and less effective. To be fair to the lad, though, you could say the same about nearly everyone else in the team. The Preston game was his best for a while. I`d say we could do better.

  • 1957

    I though the was going to be a good addition up to the ACN and just needed regular starts. Since his excellent performances at the ACN he has been less than convincing, don’t think Benitez will sign him.

  • hetonmag

    If Rafa stays I think he will be looking for an upgrade on Atsu, on a separate issue why hasn’t the owner and the M/D publicly congratulated Rafa and the lads on their promotion.

  • MadMag83

    Double what Chelsea paid despite never setting the world alight? And with only a year left on his contract…. might be ok as a squad player next season but if I was Rafa I would play hardball with Chelsea and either sign him cheap or find someone better.