The 23-year-old midfielder's representative says that £7 million would be a fair price for his client and revealed that Alan Pardew's team have already made an offerEXCLUSIVE
By Jesse Wieten
Newcastle United will need to pay an "exceptional fee" to lure Ajax into selling midfielder Vurnon Anita, the player's agent has claimed.
Harry Lulofs has told Goal.com that the Magpies have already submitted an offer for the 23-year-old, although he does not know the amount of money Alan Pardew's club have tabled.
Ajax have not specified to him the asking price they would require to allow Anita to move, added Lulofs, who reiterated that the player has not asked for a transfer.
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"It's not correct that Vurnon asked Ajax for a transfer," the agent said. "It's correct that Newcastle made an offer for him, but I don't know how high this was.
"They never tell me. Ajax did tell me that he can only leave when Newcastle pays an exceptional fee. They didn't say how high that fee should be."
Lulofs felt that €9 million (£7m), which he understood to be the price Tottenham paid for defender Jan Vertonghen, would represent fair value.
"I think €9m is a decent fee," he opined. "If my information's right, that's what Tottenham paid for Vertonghen. Vurnon is a midfielder, so I think a fee around the €9m seems fair.
"But it's a strange market. Is Ola John [who joined Benfica from FC Twente] worth €5m (£3.9m) or €15m (£11.75m)? Rafael van der Vaart, to me one of the best Dutch players of the last decade, left Ajax for Hamburger SV for not more than €4m (£3.1m)."
Newcastle represent an attractive option for Anita, Lulofs revealed, with the player ready to face a new challenge overseas.
Pardew guided the Tyneside club to fifth place in the Premier League last season and Lulofs admitted that their Champions League aspirations were exciting.
"Newcastle is a nice club," he added. "They play for the top five places in the Premier League and they want to join the Champions League.
"Besides, that it's a nice city. Vurnon is ready for a new step. He lives for his sport and is a real warrior. He's also very good in one-touch football.
"One the other side he's still 23 and with Ajax he plays Champions League football. It's not a disaster if he stays with Ajax.
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"There are more clubs interested in Anita, like Aston Villa, Norwich City and last year Marseille. But only Newcastle made an offer for him so far. We requested a talk with Newcastle, but Ajax wouldn't let us."
Lulofs insisted that Anita did not want to hold Ajax to ransom, and would sign a new contract if he did not complete a move to a new club this summer.
"We don't want to have the same situation as Gregory van der Wiel," Lulofs stated. "He [Van der Wiel] needs to be sold this year, otherwise he can leave for a free agent.
"It's either Anita leaves Ajax right now, or we sign a new contract at Ajax. In two weeks we'll have a meeting with [technical director] Marc Overmars."