ALAN PARDEW has pledged to do all he can to persuade Loic Remy to sign a permanent deal with Newcastle, but has admitted the striker could leave if other clubs offer him more money than the Magpies are willing to stump up.
Remy's loan from QPR will expire at the end of the season, and while the possibility of a permanent switch was discussed last summer, there is nothing in the current loan arrangement that compels the 27-year-old to join Newcastle on a full-time basis.
The striker appears to have enjoyed his time in the North-East, and his tally of 12 Premier League goals proves he can be successful in the current set up, but Newcastle officials are yet to discuss finances with Remy and his representatives.
Once they do, they are extremely unlikely to match the £80,000-a-week that the France international is currently understood to earn as part of his QPR deal, with Mike Ashley having refused to pay a similar amount to other players in the past.
With Remy expected to attract the interest of a number of Champions League clubs both at home and abroad, Newcastle could well find themselves outbid, and while other factors will be considered, money is likely to be the key determinant behind any future decision.
“Like all strikers, he wants to achieve the best scenario he can for himself,” said Pardew, who takes his side to Hull City this afternoon. “I suspect that will be international football and the Champions League.
“We can cross one of those off, and that is international football. He has been in the (France) squad and will have a good chance between now and the summer of making the World Cup.
“Champions League football is the next one and, in the summer, that is the bridge we have to persuade players we can cross.
“But I don't think it will just come down to how much he loves the club or what we think we can get here in terms of better players and Champions League football. It will be about the finances as well. That is a big part.
“(Wayne) Rooney is an example of that. He was definitely going to leave, and now (after Manchester United offered him £300,000-a-week) he is not.”
Remy snubbed Newcastle last January when, despite a deal being agreed, he swerved a scheduled appointment in the North-East to travel to London and sign for QPR.
He was unable to keep the Loftus Road club in the Premier League, hence his loan move to Newcastle, but while Pardew was deeply upset at the time of last year's 11th-hour U-turn, he insists the incident is now well and truly forgotten.
Indeed, having worked with Remy at close quarters for the last six months, he has been hugely impressed with the striker's honesty and commitment.
“I don't go down that line with him,” he said. “What is done is done. It's football, and we move on quickly.
“I want him to stay because I have enjoyed working with him. I have to say that he is an easy guy to work with. Most strikers can be difficult in terms of their mood swings, goals or no goals. There are quite a few out-there characters who are a bit left-field.
“He is quite a sensible guy actually, apart from his dress code, which is definitely left-field. He is an easy guy to manage and is doing well for us.”
Remy's success in front of goal stands in marked contrast to Papiss Cisse, who has failed to score a Premier League goal in open play since last April.
Cisse's goal drought has turned him into a pale imitation of the player who swept all before him in his first six months in English football, with last weekend's glaring first-half miss against Aston Villa exemplifying the lack of confidence that is plaguing his game.
Pardew admits Cisse's form is a major worry, but would rather stick with the striker in an attempt to help engender an improvement rather than cast him back into the reserves.
“Papiss has not scored as many goals as we would like,” he said. “I have got to get him playing in the next 11 games, and I have got to get something out of him.
“Papiss is our player, so I will probably lean to him more than to Luuk (de Jong). He is a player that is signed here for three more years.”
De Jong will still get chances to impress though, with Pardew admitting that the Dutchman's performances in the next two-and-a-half months will determine whether Newcastle trigger an automatic buy-out clause in his loan contract from Borussia Monchengladbach.
“He needs to make a success of these last games,” he said. “But he's made a good start. He came into a team that had just lost (Yohan) Cabaye, and we lost a couple of games without Remy, so it was difficult for him. But he's starting to find his feet every day.
“He is a great pro, as you would expect from Holland, and with all his characteristics he reminds me of Peter Lovenkrands. In terms of his attitude and application, I could not ask for better than that.”