Newcastle United linked with two January deals as ex-Aston Villa striker claims Steve Bruce doesn't trust striker

The January transfer window is just around the corner and Newcastle United are reportedly looking closer to home, rather than further afield.

Wednesday, 11th December 2019, 5:00 pm
Updated Wednesday, 11th December 2019, 5:00 pm
NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 08: Steve Bruce, Manager of Newcastle United looks on  during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Southampton FC at St. James Park on December 08, 2019 in Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom. (Photo by Nigel Roddis/Getty Images)
NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE, ENGLAND - DECEMBER 08: Steve Bruce, Manager of Newcastle United looks on during the Premier League match between Newcastle United and Southampton FC at St. James Park on December 08, 2019 in Newcastle upon Tyne, United Kingdom. (Photo by Nigel Roddis/Getty Images)

Magpies managing director Lee Charnley played down talk of new arrivals unless the “right opportunity” comes up.

But one player who is on the agenda is left-back Jetro Willems, who is taking the Premier League by storm following his loan move from Frankfurt in the summer.

United can purchase the Dutchman for just under £9.5million, and according to the Northern Echo, Newcastle could look to push through a permanent deal next month rather than the end of the season.

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The Echo, who also state that the Magpies remain interested in Arsenal’s Granit Xhaka, say sources close to Queen’s Park claim they have rejected a £350,000 bid from Newcastle and Rangers.

That bid was for 16-year-old Regan Thomson, a midfielder catching the eye of several clubs, though Newcastle have been labelled favourites to secure his signature.

However, their pursuit could come under threat in the New Year with Rangers preparing to step up their efforts to tempt him to Ibrox.

Meanwhile, Ex-Sunderland striker Darren Bent believes Steve Bruce must not trust Dwight Gayle, otherwise he would be featuring in United’s first-team,

Gayle, injured for the opening months of the campaign, is yet to start a game under Bruce and has been limited to just four substitute appearances.

The striker’s future has been up for debate too, with Nottingham Forest and West Bromwich Albion keen on signing him for their Championship promotion pushes

“Yeah, we’re not seeing what’s going on in training cause you would think goal-wise,” Bent told Football Insider. “He’d definitely be getting more minutes than he is

“But he’s getting nothing, so something else must be going on.

“I like Dwight Gayle, I think he’ll always score you goals, he’s sharp, he’s very very good, but for whatever reason…the manager doesn’t trust him and if the manager doesn’t trust you then you tend to struggle.

“So why isn’t he getting more minutes? I really don’t know.”