HARRY REDKNAPP has told Newcastle United to forget about making a renewed approach for Loic Remy, and expressed confidence the striker will be still be at QPR when the transfer window closes.
While the Magpies have signed Emmanuele Riviere, Ayoze Perez and Facundo Ferrerya this summer, Alan Pardew remains keen to recruit one more centre-forward before the end of the month.
With Alexandre Lacazette looking increasingly unlikely to leave Lyon and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang having committed his long-term future to Borussia Dortmund, Remy is one of the few proven candidates potentially still available.
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The France international came close to joining Liverpool last month, only for the deal to collapse when problems emerged with his medical, but the existence of an £8m buyout clause in his contract means his future will continue to be in doubt until the transfer deadline arrives.
Redknapp accepts there will always be a risk of Remy leaving Loftus Road, but having had a number of heart-to-heart discussions with the 27-year-old in the last few weeks, the QPR boss is confident it would take guaranteed Champions League football for his star striker to move elsewhere.
“I sat down with him when he came back, but I didn’t have to persuade him about anything,” said Redknapp. “We sat down and he said, ‘Look, I’m back and I want to play’. Unless something comes up – Champions League or something massive for him – he would like to stay here and play.
“He’s shown that attitude every day on the training ground – I couldn’t have asked for more from him. He’s worked hard and got himself fit, and that’s all you can ask.
“There have been several clubs that have rung up about him in the Premier League, but I don’t think they would be clubs he would particularly want to leave QPR for.
“We hope Loic will stay, and I’m not trying to sell him because we don’t want to sell him. For me, really, he should be a £20m striker in comparison to others that are getting sold for £12m. To have lost him for the amount we were going to, he would have been too cheap.”
While Newcastle’s recruitment team continue to pursue potential targets, there is also a desire to trim some of the fringe players from the squad, with Steven Taylor having been identified as a saleable asset.
The 28-year-old has entered the final year of his contract, and Newcastle officials are keen to move him on now rather than run the risk of losing him for nothing next summer.
Despite having had a decent pre-season, Taylor is extremely unlikely to figure in the starting line-up as Newcastle kick off their Premier League campaign against Manchester City on Sunday, with Mike Williamson expected to partner Fabricio Coloccini at the heart of the back four.
Taylor has only made eight Premier League starts since being sent off against City on the first day of last season, but the centre-half is adamant he will not be forced out of his hometown club and is determined to fight for his place over the course of the next nine months.
QPR were rumoured to be interested in his services in January, but Taylor is understood to have told the Newcastle hierarchy that he will not be leaving, even if his first-team prospects look slight unless defensive injuries occur.