Chelsea trigger Demba Ba clause
Newcastle United have confirmed Chelsea have been given permission to speak to Demba Ba after meeting the striker’s release clause.
Ba has been withdrawn from the Newcastle squad for Wednesday night’s game against Everton as a result.
A statement on the Magpies’ official website read: “Newcastle United can confirm that Chelsea Football Club has made an official offer for Demba Ba which has triggered the release clause in the player’s contract.
“The club has given the player permission to speak to Chelsea FC and therefore he will not be included in the squad for tonight’s game against Everton.”
Chelsea, who have now confirmed the sale of Daniel Sturridge to Liverpool, have been eager to add a further striker to their squad to assist Fernando Torres.
Interim manager Rafa Benitez said on the Blues’ official website on Tuesday that he was keen to rotate in attack as Torres has made more appearances for the club this season than any other outfield player.
Benitez said: “We are trying to manage the team so as soon as I can change Fernando, I have to do it obviously, but I couldn't at Everton because you have to score and he is the centre-forward - but we will try to manage him and do things properly.
“He wants the team winning games so he will understand that is the way and he will accept this. All of the players want to play every game but I think they can understand now that if we want to achieve something important then we have to use the squad. They know that is the way.”
Before Newcastle's Premier League game against Everton manager Alan Pardew confirmed the deal was close to completion but claimed the club could move on without Ba.
"It's done. He will go to Chelsea with our blessing," Pardew told Sky Sports 1 before kick-off against Everton. "He has done fantastic for us and it's not a bad thing, all the uncertainty is now done and we can move on. This club is bigger than any player for sure."