Monday Ticker: Newcastle snatches up Rondon, Dortmund acquires Witsel, and more

Monday Ticker: Newcastle snatches up Rondon, Dortmund acquires Witsel, and more

European Soccer

Monday Ticker: Newcastle snatches up Rondon, Dortmund acquires Witsel, and more

Newcastle United’s business this summer did not end on Monday as they acquired a veteran striker on-loan.

The Magpies have confirmed the signing of Venezuelan international Salomon Rondon on a season-long loan from West Bromwich Albion, Sky Sports reported. With Rondon moving to St. James Park, forward Dwight Gayle has gone the opposite direction with Newcastle paying reportedly £2 million.

Rondon will add a physical presence to the Newcastle front after the Magpies also let Aleksandar Mitrovic head to Fulham. The 28-year-old scored seven times for West Brom last season, as the team was relegated to the EFL Championship.

Gayle netted six league goals for Newcastle in 2017-18, a year after scoring 23 in their promotion season to the top-flight.

“It’s an honour to be here and I’m excited to get started with my teammates,” Rondon said in a team release. “The clubs were talking for a long time and now I’m focused on the season to help my teammates to get the points to do well this season.”

Rondon is Rafa Benitez’s sixth summer signing, as they kick off their season this coming weekend.

Axel Witsel signs with Borussia Dortmund

Borussia Dortmund bolstered their midfield on Monday with the signing of a Belgian international.

Former Zenit and current Tianjin Quanjian midfielder Axel Witsel has agreed to a deal with the Bundesliga side, according to ESPN. Witsel joined Tianjin in 2017 from Zenit after 122 appearances with the Russian giants. The reported fee for Witsel is €20 million.

He is coming off a six-appearance summer with Belgium at the 2018 FIFA World Cup, helping the Red Devils to a third-place finish. He has earned 96 caps with Belgium and has also seen time domestically with Standard Liege and Benfica.

“It was my goal to return to Europe from China  after the World Cup,” Witsel said. “I am happy and also proud to be able to play for BVB. I didn’t need much time after our first talks. Borussia Dortmund to me are one of the best clubs on the mainland [Europe]. To be honest, I can’t wait to play in front of 81,000.”

Witsel becomes the seventh signing for Dortmund this summer who began their new league season on Aug. 26th.

Everton close to signing Shakhtar Donetsk’s Bernard

Everton are seeking to acquire another winger in the form of Brazilian international Bernard.

The Shakhtar Donetsk man recently rejected a new contract from the Ukrainian side, and had been linked to Everton, Inter Milan, and West Ham United, Goal reported.

At 25, Bernard is expected to complete a medical on Merseyside and finalize personal terms on Tuesday. During five seasons at Shakhtar, Bernard has made over 150 appearances for the club including 43 in European competitions. His last cap for Brazil came in 2014, but still could be in the future plans for the National Team.

Bernard’s professional career began with Atletico Mineiro in 2010 before moving to Shakhtar three years later. If he does join Everton, he will become the second Brazilian signing under Marco Silva this summer joining Richarlison.

Bordeaux signs Nigerian winger Samuel Kalu

After losing Brazilian playmaker Malcom to Barcelona, Bordeaux looks to have gotten his replacement.

Nigerian playmaker Samuel Kalu has joined Gus Poyet’s side from Belgian side Gent signing a five-year deal with the Ligue 1 side ESPN reported. The 20-year-old was impressive for Gent in 2017-18, scoring six goals and adding seven assists in 32 appearances.

Joining from AS Trencin in January 2016, Kalu made an immediate impact with Gent, registering 10 points in 16 matches. Although with no international caps yet for the Super Eagles, a move to France’s top-flight should give Kalu more exposure on the national scale.

Bordeaux opens their 2018-19 season on Sunday against Strasbourg.

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