• Premier League

Newcastle favourites in chase for expensive Bent

ESPN staff
July 24, 2013
Darren Bent was little more than a bench-warmer for periods of last season © PA Photos

Newcastle United have emerged as the favourites to sign out-of-favour striker Darren Bent from Aston Villa after Fulham cooled interest because of the player's wage demands.

Bent, who is believed to be earning around £80,000-a-week at Villa, has dropped hints that he will be leaving the club in the next few weeks. He was a peripheral figure last season, playing 23 games and at times was not even able to get on the bench.

He had been linked with Fulham but the club has decided they were not willing to meet his wage demands, leaving Newcastle the main suitors.

Newcastle manager Alan Pardew worked well with Bent when the pair were at Charlton and it is expected a formal approach will be made in the coming days .

Bent cost Villa £24 million in January 2011 but they accept they will take a hefty loss when he is sold on.

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