[Original post edited at 10:11 pm CST to add some material - OSotP]
Greetings and good evening/mid night to you, denizens of the Toon. I come to you with news that is starting to spread like wildfire through the Twitters and other more reputable news sources in the past not very long. It seems that Alan Pardew's assertion that we are out of the market for a striker has not kept its legs very long, as a striker has reportedly begun a shock trial with Newcastle United. His goal scoring record is impeccable , with 92 goals in 120 appearances for his previous club side. Got your guesses ready on who the 23-year-old plays for?
Jason Prior is finishing out his season with Ryman South side Bognor Regis Town. He was lined up for a £12,000 move up the rungs into League Football until his current club gave him permission to train on Tyneside with a view to a potential move. I guess £12,00 is right in Ashley's price range. Here's a video of 7 goals from the marksman:
A deal for the transfer of Prior to Eastleigh of the Blue Square Bet South Division (still a division below league football) had apparently been agreed prior to Bognor Regis approving his trial with Newcastle, but Eastleigh have already come on record as saying their problem is with Bognor Regis, not Newcastle United, so any repercussions will not be visited back on us should this deal find itself moving forward.
Prior won the golden something award as leading scorer in the Ryman League 2010-2011 competition with 38 goals in 44 appearances.
Making the jump from non-league to the Premier League...it's the kind of stuff that dreams are made of (or still more apt in this particular situation could be made of), and while perhaps more common than you might think, still extremely rare. Chris Smalling (now of Manchester United) accomplished the feat a couple of years ago, jumping from Maidstone to Fulham before his ultimate move to Manchester and ultimately arriving as a full England international.
Michael Kightly of Wolves made the jump from Grays Athletic to Wolves, who were in the Championship at the time, but eared promotion in his first season with the club.
DJ Campbell, now with QPR, jumped up from Stevenage Borough to Blackpool through Brentford with a degree of success, scoring 13 in 31 appearances with Blackpool in the Championship last year.
Good luck to Jason with his trial, and he'll have all the best wishes of Coming Home Newcastle moving forward!