Bundesliga club Mainz have released a statement announcing that a deal has been agreed ‘in principle’ with Newcastle United for Japanese international Yoshinori Muto, for a fee reportedly around the £9.5m.
Though Newcastle are yet to officially confirm Muto’s arrival, a deal is believe to have been agreed in principle, with a few formalities – including the acquisition of a work permit – to be ironed out.
Muto will become Newcastle’s fifth signing of the summer, following the arrivals of Martin Dubravka, Kenedy, Ki Sung-yueng and most recently Fabian Schar.
In the statement, Director of Mainz 05 Rouven Schröder said: “We have had good and constructive discussions with Newcastle United and we have come to an agreement in principle, there are still some key details to clarify, but we are confident that we will soon reach a final transfer decision.
“The clubs are, as far as the terms of the contract, largely agreed, however, are around the change still time-consuming formalities to be done.”
The 26-year-old has 20 goals and 10 assists in the Bundesliga for Mainz (8 and 4 respectively last season), and was also a member of Japan’s World Cup squad in Russia, featuring in the group match against Poland.
Muto’s reported transfer represents Newcastle’s biggest purchase of the summer, though the club are still yet to break their record buy of £16m for Michael Owen back in 2005.
Barring any issues with regards to a work permit, it’s expected that the Magpies will officially announce Muto soon – and also confirm the departure of goalkeeper Matz Sels, who will reportedly move to Strasbourg in France’s Ligue 1.