Steve Bruce issues transfer update at Newcastle United ahead of Joe Willock talks with Arsenal
Newcastle United will have to “cut their cloth” in this summer's transfer window, according to Steve Bruce.
However, Newcastle United's head coach has pledged to “batter down the door” to get as much as he can to invest in the club’s squad.
Bruce signed four players – Callum Wilson, Jamal Lewis, Ryan Fraser, Jeff Hendrick and Mark Gillespie – last summer, and recruited Joe Willock on loan from Arsenal in January’s transfer window.
Tellingly, Fraser, Hendrick and Gillespie were all free agents following the first round of behind-closed-doors football.
“I’m sure every club will be scrutinising for Bosmans (free agents), for example,” said Bruce, speaking ahead of Sunday’s home game against Arsenal.
“They’re always attractive, for obvious reasons. Look, you quietly plan ahead, of course you do. I think every club, the managers that I speak to, have no doubt been hit badly financially, which is understandable, when you consider the past year.
"So we’re all going to have to cut our cloth, and that’s always difficult. I have to understand, and I think all the supporters will understand too that, that there won’t be millions and millions of pounds spent this summer.
"I think we’re not alone in that. Up and down the country clubs have been struggling. We’ll see what we’ve got. It’s my job to batter down the door and get as much as I can, and see what we can do.”
Willock, ineligible for the game against his parent club, is a primary target for the club in the summer, though the midfielder – who has scored four goals for United – may not be available for sale, despite reports of Arsenal valuing the 21-year-old at £20million.
However, another loan could be an option – and that would suit Newcastle.
“I don’t know where the £20million has come from,” said Bruce, whose side is close to securing its Premier League status following a run of two wins and two draws.
“We have to have a conversation with Arsenal. We don’t even know if he’s available.
"I do know that Joe’s enjoyed it here. He’s done very well for us. We’re delighted for him. He’s enjoyed the area, and he’s been quite successful.”