Newcastle battling to break transfer deadlock ahead of USA tour

Mike Ashley and Lee Charnley
Mike Ashley and Lee Charnley

Newcastle United are battling to sign a player in time for the club’s tour of the USA.

Steve McClaren had hoped to be taking at least one new player across the Atlantic with the rest of his squad.

But United, hopeful of securing PSV Eindhoven midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum, are yet to sign a player this summer.

And time is running out to secure a player in time for the squad’s departure for a three-game tour of the USA.

New head coach Steve McClaren and his players leave at the weekend, but they first take on Gateshead at the International Stadium on Friday night.

McClaren, aware of the growing impatience on Tyneside for a signing given owner Mike Ashley’s pledge to “invest” this summer, asked for patience in an email to fans last week.

The 54-year-old told supporters of the “hard work” going on behind the scenes at United.

Managing director Lee Charnley is leading the club’s efforts in the transfer market.

There has been contact with PSV Eindhoven over a deal for Wijnaldum, who was coy on his future after returning to his club yesterday.

The 24-year-old said: “The media find it all more exciting than me.”

Wijnaldum, however, could still be the first through the door, and there could be progress on efforts to sign the Holland international later this week.

Newcastle tabled a bid for winger Florian Thauvin late last month, but no agreement has been reached, as yet, with Olympique Marseille over the 22-year-old.

Charlie Austin is another target, though the club has not yet made a formal offer to Queens Park Rangers, who rate the striker in the £15million-bracket.

Austin, however, has other options, and the 26-year-old is waiting to see if Chelsea firm up their interest in him.