RAFAEL BENITEZ is being kept informed about Pepe Reina’s ongoing contract wrangle with Napoli in the hope the former Liverpool goalkeeper could still end up moving to St James’ Park.

Benitez is keen to bring in a shot-stopper with top-flight experience this summer but the Magpies have so far been unable to strike a deal for Reina or Willy Caballero, who has now agreed to join Chelsea.

Both of those would have provided Newcastle with the quality and Premier League know-how required, although it is Reina who has always been the preferred choice if an agreement could be reached with Napoli.

The problem is the Naples club are adamant they still want around the £5m mark for the 34-year-old, who is haggling over the details of a new contract that has been offered to him.

Reina and his advisors want a £1.6m release clause inserted into a three-year deal, while Napoli want that to be a £5m buy-out over a two-year deal.

Such a stand-off has kept Newcastle on alert, even if the reality is they will still have to pay more than they want to secure his services because Napoli are adamant knowing he still has 12 months remaining on his contract.

The situation is an example of the frustrations Benitez has suffered on the transfer front so far, as he waits to hear some positive news from managing director Lee Charnley.

His hopes of landing Chelsea youngster Tammy Abraham look to be over after Swansea City agreed a deal to land England Under-21s striker Tammy Abraham.

Swansea expect to finalise the paperwork that will see the 19-year-old move to the Liberty Stadium on a season-long loan, where he will join up with Paul Clement who he knows from his younger days at Stamford Bridge.

The Magpies had believed they were in the strongest position to secure his services a fortnight ago, only for Abraham to stall on a decision and that opened the door for the likes of Swansea and Brighton to compete for his signature.

The switch has not been officially confirmed yet, and Abraham had not been expected to make a firm decision until the European Under-21s Championships are over. He is, though, understood to be keen to play under Clement.

Benitez is now pressing ahead with attempts to land £9m Cameroon striker Vincent Aboubakar from Porto. Rennes were also a keen but are not prepared to match the £2.5m a year wages he could secure at St James’ Park. Newcastle are on the verge of landing Eibar defender Florian Lejeune.