Newcastle lead chase to sign Alkmaar star Elm

Newcastle are reportedly leading Liverpool in the chase for AZ Alkmaar midfielder Rasmus Elm according to a trusted source despite missing out on the chance to scout him at the weekend.

SqueakyBumTime understands that the Magpies have put the Swedish star at the top of their transfer hit list after moving back into contention for Champions League qualification following last nights 2-0 win at Chelsea at Stamford Bridge.

Boss Alan Pardew is a keen admirer of £7 million rated Elm and was left bitterly disappointed after flying to Holland on Sunday to watch him in action in AZ’s game with Feyenoord only to learn he was missing after recently becoming a father.

Liverpool manager Kenny Dalglish was also in attendance and is keen to secure the services of the 24-year-old for whom he has held a long-standing admiration.

But the Reds look likely to miss out on the Scandinavian playmaker but with Newcastle challenging for a place on Europe’s top table they have jumped to the front of the queue to secure his signature.

It seems certain that Elm, who has made 59 appearances and scored 15 goals for AZ, will depart the AFAS Stadion in the summer and with interest from around the continent going quiet the Premier League is expected to be his next destination.

The Toon Army have unearthed some gems this season with Papiss Cisse, Demba Ba and Yohan Cabaye all in contention to claim the signing of the season award.

And the goalscoring midfielder certainly fits into owner Mike Ashley’s current blueprint at St James’ Park that dictates Pardew buy players under the age of 26 with a potential resale value.

It’s not yet known whether chief scout Graham Carr has been dispatched to run the rule over Elm and provide a final verdict on whether he is worth pursuing.