Leicester City have reportedly rejected a second bid from Newcastle United for James Maddison, with the Foxes holding out for £60 million.

According to 90 min, Leicester City have rejected Newcastle United’s second offer for James Maddison despite their desperate need for a cash injection to kick-start their summer recruitment drive. The English midfielder has become the subject of strong interest from the Magpies as Eddie Howe desperately tries to improve his squad before the start of the 2022/23 season.

Newcastle United opened talks with Leicester City to discuss a deal for the England international last Friday, with an opening offer of £40 million swiftly turned down by the Foxes. After having their first attempt knocked back, the Magpies tabled another huge bid that would eclipse the club-record £40 million fee they paid for Joelinton in July 2019.

Reports varied on the size of the offer, with suggestions the base fee was around £45 million, although the payments are said to be staggered over several years. It is understood that Leicester would only entertain an approach above £60 million for Maddison, and that is despite Brendan Rodgers standing firm in his statement that they do not want to sell their star man.

Howe is said to be a big admirer of the 25-year-old’s creative talents and wants to bring him to St. James’ Park for the upcoming season. But Dan Ashworth & co. are unlikely to go anywhere close to Leicester’s asking price and will need a compromise from their Premier League counterparts to find a common ground in negotiations.

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Newcastle have received sufficient encouragement from Maddison’s camp to move ahead in their attempt to reach an agreement with Leicester, with the player believed to be keen on moving to St. James’ Park this summer. But the Foxes are determined not to lose both Maddison and Youri Tielemans in the same transfer window.

Leicester are trying to tie both down to fresh terms, despite Tielemans already agreeing on personal terms with Arsenal. It should also be noted that Maddison’s current contract with the club expires in two years, so this might be the Foxes’ only genuine chance to extract a lucrative transfer fee from his departure unless he decides to extend his deal in the near future.

Maddison has been an excellent acquisition from Norwich City for Leicester. He has progressed drastically under Brendan Rodgers, and despite his side’s staggering underperformance, he stood out in terms of his attacking output last season. The English playmaker was named as Leicester’s Player of the Year, after being directly involved in 30 goals in all competitions.

Amid Newcastle’s pursuit of Maddison, Leicester have reportedly shown an interest in Martin Dubravka as a replacement for Kasper Schmeichel, who is set to undergo a medical before officially signing along the dotted line for OGC Nice, bringing an end to his eleven-year stay at the King Power Stadium in the process.

It will be interesting to see if Newcastle United will bring the Slovakian shot-stopper into the equation should they return with a third bid for the £60 million-rated English playmaker.

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