NEWCASTLE UNITED have joined the growing list of clubs keen on signing Middlesbrough winger Adama Traore this summer – even though his valuation has soared in recent months.

Boro’s failure to climb into the Premier League has put a number of top-flight clubs on alert, including the Magpies.

Rafael Benitez is keen to add pace to his Newcastle team and Traore is an option he is considering, particularly at a time when the chances of landing Kenedy from Chelsea on a permanent basis are receding.

Benitez has admired the Middlesbrough talent for a while, having shown an interest last summer and in January following Boro’s relegation to the Championship.

Under Tony Pulis, though, the Spaniard’s form highlighted that with the right manager he could be a huge asset to clubs in the Premier League – and he showed why he spent his youth at Barcelona.

Traore’s electric pace and power is well suited to top tier clubs, with Chelsea and West Ham two of the others showing the strongest interest at this stage.

Chelsea have been long term admirers, dating back to the few impressive displays he turned in for Boro early in their recent Premier League campaign when he caused trouble for the likes of Arsenal and Manchester City.

Boro have a player with enormous potential and would not be prepared to let him go on the cheap, particularly at a time when Pulis has relied heavily on him for creativity.

Traore has previously been regarded in the £15m bracket but Boro are likely to want a lot more than that now because of how important he has become to the team.

Pulis has indicated already that he is not looking to make huge changes to his squad this summer because he feels that chairman Steve Gibson spent a lot last summer.

However, if interested clubs were successful in landing the likes of Traore and Ben Gibson then Pulis would be armed with a lot more cash to spend, but it would be difficult to replace two of his best players.

Pulis is looking to strengthen his forward line, having finished the season with just Britt Assombalonga and Patrick Bamford in attack. Even though Rudy Gestede made it back from injury to fioogure in the play-off semi-final second leg, the manager needs an extyra option.

He has been strongly credited with an interest in FC Zurich striker Michael Frey.

The 23-year-old has been watched by Boro’s scouting team and it is claimed they were inside the stadium to see him score in Zurich’s 2-1 win over Young Boys in the Swiss Cup final.

Frey is valued at £2m and has an eye for goal, having scored 16 times season and 12 of those were in the league.

Zurich paid £360,000 for him last summer from Young Boys. He is 6ft 2in tall and is the sort of height that Pulius likes to have leading the line.

Boro also keep being linked with Bristol City defender Aden Flint. The 28-year-old was on the club’s radar before Pulis’ time in charge but ended up staying with the Robins rather than heading to Birmingham or Teesside.

Flint only signed a new contract at Ashton Gate in January after a return to the team and good form, but is trying noit to get distracted by transfer talk like he did 12 months ago.

“Well, I’m just back playing football and enjoying football, you know. It was a stressful time in the summer not knowing what was going off,” explained Flint.

“Like I say, I’ve just been working hard, enjoying my football, made my way back into the team and hopefully I can keep that. Now it’s just down to me to keep my own individual place and also help the team keep up the great performances as well.”