Steve Bruce provides Newcastle United transfer update as Joe Willock returns from Arsenal

Newcastle United head coach Steve Bruce refused to rule out new signings ahead of the transfer deadline.

Monday, 16th August 2021, 12:30 pm

The summer window slams shut in just over a fortnight’s time on Tuesday, August 31 at 11pm, and Bruce says he could still add to his squad before then.

Joe Willock became the club’s first summer signing on Friday afternoon following his £20million switch from Arsenal.

The 21-year-old was Bruce’s number one target after a remarkable loan spell last term that saw Willock score a record-breaking seven goals in as many games.

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Newcastle United head coach Steve Bruce. (Photo by George Wood/Getty Images)

Willock was unveiled to the St James’s Park crowd ahead of the 4-2 opening day Premier League defeat to West Ham and was met by a rapturous applause.

Indeed, with United’s transfer budget heavily splashed on Willock, Bruce hinted previously at exploring the loan market.

When asked about further incomings, the 60-year-old revealed: “We’ll keep monitoring to see what we’ve got and see what becomes available but at this particular moment, I’m delighted we’ve got Joe Willock in.

“We’ll see if there is anyone who can make us better. If there is, then we’ll try.”

A central defender is believed to be a priority for Bruce, and that was before Florian Lejeune was sold to La Liga outfit Alaves.

Disappointingly for Bruce, he missed out on the loan signing of Manchester United defender Axel Tuanzebe to Aston Villa last week.

Elsewhere, Kristoffer Ajer was on United’s radar before joining Brentford in a £13.5m deal from Celtic.

Ozan Kabak, who Newcastle almost signed on a loan-to-buy in January before Liverpool swooped in last minute, had also been considered.

Tottenham Hotspur’s Cameron Carter-Vickers has also been mentioned having briefly worked with assistant coach Graeme Jones at Bournemouth last year.

Speaking to Sky Sports, Bruce added: "We'll never stop looking.

"We always want more as managers and coaches but as we stand we're exactly where we were and if we can add a little bit more to it then we'll try.

"My job is to improve us, so all over the pitch we look at so that’s what we’ll try and do."

Bruce’s side face Aston Villa, Burnley and Southampton before transfer deadline day.

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