Newcastle United transfers state of play: £20m bid, Wolves swoop in for striker and loan targets
With just over two weeks left of the summer transfer window, Newcastle United are still looking to improve some key areas of the squad.
It has been almost seven weeks since Newcastle confirmed the signing of Sven Botman from Lille – the club’s most recent senior summer acquisition.
Since then, transfer rumours and reports have been rife yet nothing has materialised.
What has happened since the last senior signing?
The Magpies’ pursuit of Hugo Ekitike was well documented, a bid was accepted by Reims but the player opted to join Paris Saint-Germain instead.
United have been priced out of moves for attacking players such as Moussa Diaby from Bayer Leverkusen and Alexander Isak from Real Sociedad but they continue to scour the market for new additions.
Closer to home, Newcastle have seen bids for Leicester City’s James Maddison and Leeds United’s Jack Harrison rejected, causing the club to look elsewhere.
What is Newcastle United’s transfer priority?
A serious hamstring injury to Jonjo Shelvey has ruled him out until just before the World Cup break in November. As a result, a potential midfield addition may be considered.
While head coach Eddie Howe has said the club are capable of signing a midfielder in the remaining weeks of the transfer window, it is not a priority.
The priority, as it has been since the start of the summer, is to strengthen the forward line.
A right-winger, central striker or versatile attacking player are the key positions Newcastle have been looking at.
How much money do Newcastle have to spend?
There is no definitive budget at Newcastle this summer but the club will be strict in adhering to the Premier League’s Profit and Sustainability rules. Steady, sustained growth is key and the club don’t want to risk their ability to spend in future transfer windows by spending significant money while the club’s income streams are limited.
To help circumvent this somewhat, the club will try to spread transfer fees over the length of the player’s contract providing the selling club accepts. For example, the initial fee paid to Burnley for Nick Pope was around £3million, with the remainder of the fee paid over the next four years.
While the club have committed to spending roughly £60million so far this summer with the signings of Matt Targett, Pope and Sven Botman, the actual money that it has cost the club so far is significantly lower.
Without knowing the exact figures, it is understood that this leaves room for the club to spend around another £40million this window – which is at least one more major signing, plus any additional loan deals.
Who could sign for Newcastle United before the window shuts?
There are so many twists and turns in the transfer window that it’s impossible to predict with any certainty without any accepted bids or imminent arrivals on the table.
Despite several set-backs, confidence remains internally at Newcastle that at least one key signing will be made by September 1.
One senior source even quoted the infamous ‘plates spinning’ phrase previously used by former manager Steve Bruce, only this time with more conviction.
Benfica's Goncalo Ramos has been closely linked with a move to Newcastle following his impressive start to the season. But The Magpies face stiff competition from Premier League rivals Wolverhampton Wanderers, who are understood to have tabled a loan bid and have strong Portuguese connections.
Newcastle have also had a £20million bid rejected for Watford forward Joao Pedro, who scored for The Hornets at St James’s Park last season.
United are now considering whether to make an improved offer or turn their attention elsewhere.
Both Ramos and Pedro would not take up a place in Newcastle’s 25-man squad if they were to sign as both players were born after January 1, 2001.
And Newcastle are making a conscious effort to target such players given the current size of their squad.
Loan additions are also a real possibility. Newcastle have been in contact with Chelsea regarding loan deals for Armando Broja, Callum Hudson-Odoi and Conor Gallagher.
The club wouldn’t be able to loan all three but there is a possibility that The Blues may decide to let at least one of them leave the club temporarily.
Chelsea winger Christian Pulisic is another name that has been mentioned in regards to a possible loan move. While Newcastle would be interested in the United States international, it’s an ambitious one.
But any Premier League loan deals are unlikely to be done until later in the transfer window once the squads are more settled.
Will there be any outgoings at Newcastle?
As mentioned, Newcastle’s squad is currently quite large and will have to be trimmed or players will be left out.
United’s squad is currently made up of 30 players. Elliot Anderson won’t take up a place in the 25-man squad as he’s just 19-years-old.
Kell Watts has suffered a knee injury and is set to be left out and Matty Longstaff is likely to leave on loan.
Newcastle also currently have four senior goalkeepers in the squad as it stands, which could see Karl Darlow or even Martin Dubravka decide to leave the club in order to pursue regular football.
But Howe plans on naming four goalkeepers in his squad unless one openly expresses a desire to leave.
"I don’t want anyone to leave, but I’m well aware that four’s a difficult number to carry,” he said.
"My wish would be to do that, but obviously I’ve got to think of the players as well. We hopefully make the right decision.”
Matt Ritchie has been linked with a move away this summer given his lack of game time and preference to return down south.
That would leave Newcastle with a 25-man squad before any further signings are made.
But Federico Fernandez, Javier Manquillo, Jamal Lewis and the injured Jonjo Shelvey are all players whose place in the squad isn’t completely secure.