Meet Newcastle transfer target Hugo Ekitike, the highest scoring teen in Europe and compared to Mbappe and Trezeguet

IF Kylian Mbappe joining Newcastle looks a stretch too far, the Magpies could be closing on the next best thing in French wonderkid Hugo Ekitike.

With Callum Wilson injured for the next two months following a calf tear, Eddie Howe is desperate to land a new striker before Saturday’s huge relegation clash against Watford.

And they are pushing to complete a £30million move for exciting Stade Reims youngster Ekitike, 19, who has been compared to both Mbappe and David Trezeguet.

West Ham, Brighton and Brentford are also interested in the hot prospect making waves across the English Channel.

So, who is the young star a host of Prem clubs are battling it out for?

A graduate of the French club’s academy, Ekitike has exploded onto the scene this season after making his debut in August following a six-month loan spell at Danish club Vejle Boldklub at the beginning of 2021.

He already has eight goals – and two assists – in 17 games for the mid-table Ligue 1 side, making him the top scoring teenager in any of Europe’s top five leagues.

Ekiteke’s stunning impact has already seen him likened to Mbappe, who lit up the French league as a teenager with Monaco before joining PSG in 2017.

Mbappe bagged 15 goals in his first season as Monaco won the title, with Ekitike already mustering over half of that tally.

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Ekitike's form since exploding onto the scene this season has seen him compared to PSG superstar Kylian Mbappe
Mbappe scored 15 goals in his first breakthrough season with Monaco, with Ekitike already mustering half of that tally

And the youngster admits that he is looking to emulate the PSG striker himself, both on and off the pitch.

He recently said: “Over the last few years, he is the player I watch the most, who inspires me, and not necessarily only on the pitch.

“That’s what it means to be a top-level player and that’s what I aspire to become.”

Taller than Mbappe at 6ft 2in, Ekiteke likes to drift over to the left from the middle and shoot on his right foot à la Thierry Henry.

But comparisons have not stopped at Mbappe with Ekiteke reminding former France midfielder Johan Micoud of Juventus legend Trezeguet, who won both the World Cup and Euros with Les Bleus.

Micoud said: “It’s been a very long time since I’ve seen a player with a style such as his.

“The way he moves and the way he runs reminds me of a great player, David Trezeguet.”

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