Newcastle United have slapped a £20million price tag on striker Dwight Gayle.
Leeds United are interested in the striker, who wasn’t involved against West Ham United at the weekend.
The Championship club are understood to have enquired about Gayle, but Newcastle, as yet, have not received a bid.
And it would take an offer of around £20million for the club to consider selling Gayle, who scored 23 Championship goals last season and has also been linked with Fulham.
Newcastle would only sell at that price, in any case, if they were able to secure a replacement before Thursday night’s transfer deadline.
Gayle has been struggling for form and fitness.
And the 26-year-old didn’t even make the bench for the West Ham game after recovering from the bug which had seen him miss the midweek Carabao Cup defeat to Nottingham Forest.
Asked if he was left out of the squad entirely, Newcastle manager Benitez said: “No.
“He wasn’t on the bench because Mitrovic has been doing well (Aleksandar) and training well. We had two strikers (Mitrovic and Joselu), and they both scored.”
Speaking last week, Benitez said: “Obviously, he has to go back to his level, but, sometimes with strikers, it depends on scoring goals and confidence or something like that, so we’ll see.
“He’s coming back and he’s training well again, but because he had this issue (with his hamstring) maybe two or three weeks ago. He was a little bit worried, and we were talking.”
Newcastle are looking at a number of strikers, including Liverpool’s Divock Origi and Maccabi Tel Aviv’s Vidar Orn Kjartansson.
Origi, 22, is a loan target, while 27-year-old Kjartansson is rated in the £8million-bracket.
Meanwhile, Grant Hanley is close to joining Championship Norwich City after the Championship club agreed a fee for the defender, signed last summer from Blackburn Rovers. And midfielder Jack Colback, also not in Benitez’s plans, is a target for Hull City.
Newcastle Under-21s won 2-1 at Crewe last night in the Checkatrade Trophy, after goals from Liam Smith and Luke Charman.
l Liverpool have turned down a third bid from Crystal Palace for defender Mamadou Sakho that again fell short of their £30million valuation.
It is understood Palace offered £22million plus £3million in add-ons.