Newcastle United news: Championship chief declares interest in Magpies star, Jacob Murphy tipped to land new contract
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And the 72-year-old is well aware that the Arsenal man is out of his reach as he looks to build a squad capable of earning promotion from the Championship next season.
Warnock used Willock as an example of a loan deal he’d like to complete but can’t necessarily do so due to top-flight interest.
He told the Teesside Gazette: "The real top ones of the 19 or 20-year-olds, they’re probably going to get higher up than us. I don’t mean that disrespectfully, but clubs in the Premier League will want them.
"Look at (Joe) Willock at Newcastle – I like him, but he’s probably going to go for about £20m if they get him.
"The top ones are beyond us, so we have to look a little bit below or for someone we can nurture. We think we can with this lad, and I’m still optimistic. I think I’m talking to his dad later this week."
Jacob Murphy tipped for new deal at Newcastle
Sunderland legend Kevin Phillips has backed Jacob Murphy to be handed a new contract at Newcastle.
It is believed the 26-year-old’s contract is due to expire this summer, though conflicting reports suggest he has a one-year remaining.
Nevertheless, Phillips is backing United to hand Murphy fresh terms after excelling for Steve Bruce’s side in his right-wing back role.
The former Norwich City man has made 20 appearances for United this term - scoring vital goals away at Wolverhampton Wanderers and Burnley,
He told Football Insider: “I think Newcastle should offer him a new deal but a lot depends on what has been made available to Bruce in the summer and if Bruce will even be there beyond the summer. Is he going to get money to be able to enhance the squad?
“At Newcastle, he has shown that he has good quality. Why would they not want to try and re-sign him?
“Why not offer someone who knows the club and has proven that he can perform a new deal? I would get him tied down to a two or three-year extension.”
Ex-Aston Villa man expects Steve Bruce to stay at Newcastle
Former Aston Villa midfielder Lee Hendrie expects Steve Bruce to remain at Newcastle.
Calls for Bruce to be sacked intensified after the 3-0 defeat at Brighton and Hove Albion last month, however since then, the 60-year-old has collected seven points from a possible nine.
The Magpies are now eight points above the relegation zone and stand within touching distance of Premier League safety.
Hendrie is now certain Bruce will stay put at St James’s Park after Mike Ashley publicly stuck by the former Manchester United defender.
“I don’t actually think Steve Bruce will go if I’m being quite honest," Hendrie told Football FanCast.
“From sources that I know and speak to, they’ve got no thought of changing him at this current time.“