Newcastle United linked with Darren Bent as bad boy Joey Barton “seeks £3.5m pay-off”

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NEWCASTLE United have been linked with former Sunderland striker Darren Bent.

The Magpies, usually reluctant to buy players either English or approaching their 30s, are said by the Daily Mail to be preparing a £6m bid for the 29-year-old Aston Villa striker.

Fromer Newcastle United bad boy Joey Barton is in the headlines again today as he seeks to gain a permanent move away from Queens Park Rangers.

The midfielder has asked to be paid £3.5m to quit relegated club, according to The Sun.

The 30-year-old, who spent last year on loan at French side Marseille, has two years left on a £70,000-a-week deal and is demanding half of that to get him off the payroll.

Elsewhere, Monaco are ready to make a world record £85m bid for Real Madrid’s Cristiano Ronaldo and pay the 28-year-old a £17m annual salary, report the Independent.

That would be a blow to Manchester United’s hopes of bringing him back to Old Trafford.

But the Sun claim instead they are prepared to pay Robert Lewandowski £90,000 a week to convince him to move to England.

The 24-year-old was expected to stay in Germany and move to Bayern Munich, but Borussia Dortmund have vowed not to sell him to their Bundesliga rivals.

Other transfer stories:

Spurs manager Andre Villas-Boas is set to be offered £40m to become the new manager of Paris St-Germain.

The French champions had lined up Guus Hiddink to replace Real Madrid-bound Carlo Ancelotti, after Jose Mourinho snubbed them to return to Chelsea, but Hiddink has decided to stay at Russian outfit Anzhi Makhachkala. Full story: Daily Mirror.

Incoming Manchester City manager Manuel Pellegrini has already held a strategy meeting with sporting director Txiki Begiristain and chief executive Ferran Soriano before being officially announced in the role. Full story: Daily Mail.

New Everton boss Roberto Martinez is hoping to sign Wigan’s Antolin Alcaraz by the end of the week. The 30-year-old is a free agent but the Paraguay international had an injury-hit spell at the DW Stadium. Full story: Daily Mirror.

But another Wigan player, Arouna Kone, has distanced himself from a move to Everton with the 29-year-old insisting he is happy to stay. Full story: Metro.

West Ham are hopeful of concluding a deal for 36-year-old former AC Milan midfielder Massimo Ambrosini. Full story: Daily Mail.

Norwich boss Chris Hughton is closing in on PSV Eindhoven’s Swedish international forward Ola Toivonen who has scored 59 goals in 125 appearances since moving to the Dutch League. The 26-year-old is also a target for Fulham. Full story: Daily Mirror.

Hull City’s Republic of Ireland defender Paul McShane is on the verge of signing a new three-year deal with the newly promoted Premier League club, a year after the 27-year-old former Sunderland star almost quit the game. Full story: Daily Mail.