The Daily Mail says Toon managing director Derek Llambias has yet to receive an email from any club, which would trigger the £7m release clause in his contract, but it hasn’t stopped negotiations taking place outside Newcastle.
Around two months ago, Llambias opened talks over a new contract, but Ba made it clear that he wanted to explore other options in January. The club made a final offer and — with the window in mind — set a strict deadline.
If Ba refuses the improved terms on offer on Tyneside he will remain on £45,000 a week for the next 18 months unless his release clause is triggered.
Despite the current uncertainty, Ba has been a great piece of business for Newcastle, scoring 16 goals in the Premier League last season.
Llambias, a shrewd operator, will be heading to Europe later this week as Newcastle prepare to sign a replacement.
After owner Mike Ashley squandered fortunes in his first few years at the club, Llambias runs a tight ship and is at ease as Ba works his exit strategy.