NEWCASTLE UNITED have been told they will have to pay a significant premium if they want an exclusivity clause giving them the right to complete a permanent deal for Kenedy next summer.

Magpies officials are currently negotiating on a number of different fronts as they look to overhaul Rafael Benitez’s squad ahead of the start of pre-season training tomorrow.

An initial bid for Nice striker Alassane Plea was rejected on Monday, but Newcastle are expected to return with an improved offer after agreeing a deal in principle with Fulham that will see Aleksandar Mitrovic make a permanent move to Craven Cottage for around £20m.

The Magpies have also held talks with Crystal Palace over Andros Townsend, and are willing to sell Matt Ritchie to help fund the purchase of the England international, who is valued at £25m.

Talks with Chelsea over Kenedy have progressed significantly in the last few days, with the Stamford Bridge hierarchy having indicated a willingness to release the Brazilian, even though it is still anticipated that Maurizio Sarri will replace Antonio Conte as manager.

Newcastle’s recruitment team have accepted they will struggle to put together a package that will enable them to buy Kenedy outright this summer, and have proposed a loan deal with a buy-out clause enabling them to complete a permanent transfer in 12 months’ time.

Chelsea are willing to consider such an arrangement, but are adamant an exclusivity arrangement will have to be factored into the cost of any future deal.

If Newcastle are to effectively have first refusal over Kenedy next summer, they will have to agree to a fee of around £30m now. Otherwise, sources in London claim Chelsea are adamant they would rather put the Brazilian on the open market.

Kenedy impressed during his five months on Tyneside in the second half of last season, and Chelsea do not want to be locked in to a deal that does not reflect the possibility of the 22-year-old’s value rising even higher if he performs creditably again next term. Talks remain ongoing, with Newcastle officials still hopeful of being able to reach an agreement.

The same is true of their discussions with Nice over Plea, who is also the subject of strong interest from West Ham, Fulham and Borussia Monchengladbach.

The Magpies have held a number of discussions with Nice, and firmed up their interest at the start of the week.

The size of Newcastle’s unsuccessful bid has not been revealed, although it is understood to have fallen well short of Nice’s asking price of €30m.

Further discussions are planned, although Nice are aware of the mounting interest in Plea and are adamant they will not be shifting from their current position.

Plea, a 25-year-old striker who started his career with Lyon, was absent when Nice began pre-season training on Monday.

He is keen to move on this summer, but Newcastle are adamant they will not be paying €30m and have lined up West Brom’s Salomon Rondon as an alternative.

Rondon has a £16.5m relegation clause in his contract at the Hawthorns, and while his wage demands are considerable, he would be a cheaper option than Plea.

Mitrovic’s departure will help fund Newcastle’s pursuit of a new striker, and the Serb is set to complete a move to Fulham once he completes a post-World Cup holiday.