Newcastle United are set to miss out on the signing of defender Ruben Semedo from Portuguese outfit, Sporting Lisbon.
The 23-year-old was a top target for Toon boss Rafael Benitez, where an offer of around £15million to the Primeira Liga club was expected to be submitted and accepted in the coming week.
However, United looked to have waited too long to make an offer with Semedo's agent Catio Balde, revealing his client has agreed terms with an unnamed Spanish club - Villareal are said to be the front-runners.
Benitez will disappointingly have to identify other defensive targets as he looks to tighten up his back four ahead of their return to the Premier League in a few months time.
Better news for Newcastle faithful could be announced in the coming days with two signings reportedly close to joining the Magpies.
Statement regarding Semedo
As a deal to secure the signature of Semedo was seemingly nearing closer, Balde released a statement this morning confirming his next destination. Unfortunately for Newcastle, Semedo will be playing his trade is La Liga next season.
Balde statement said: “We are about to confirm the transfer of Ruben Semedo,”
“I confirm Spain. We are looking forward to close the deal today. We are working, yesterday was intense. We are absolutely sure that there will probably be a conclusion today.
“Ruben has been faced with several possibilities, the clubs are going to meet what Sporting wants. It was in Spain that we found the best solution. Until this moment I cannot confirm conclusively. He’s on the right track.”
Benitez may reinstate his interest in Stoke City captain, Ryan Shawcross, with the defender's existing contract expiring at the end of June. Newcastle were heavily linked with the Englishman when their Championship season was drawing to a close.
Though a central defender does look set to come through the doors at St James' Park. Eibar defender Florian Lejeune is a prime target of Benitez and the Magpies are rumored to have offered the Frenchman a four-year deal as well as doubling the player's current salary.
A defensive breakthrough is likely to be coupled with the loan signing of striker Tammy Abraham from Chelsea. It has been reported that the 19-year-old has told Benitez that he is to choose the Magpies over fellow promotion rivals, Brighton and Hove Albion.