Steve McClaren’s message to Man United and Spurs target

Ayoze Perez
Ayoze Perez

Steve McClaren’s told Ayoze Perez that it would be a mistake to leave Newcastle United.

A number of clubs, including Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur, are circling the forward ahead of the January transfer window.

His career is definitely best served here, absolutely. He’s getting development, a good education, the right training and most important of all, he’s playing.

Steve McClaren

But head coach McClaren is hopeful that Perez will still be at St James’s Park come February.

Perez, a revelation last season after his move from Tenerife, has scored three goals so far this season.

And the 22-year-old is now one of the first names on McClaren’s teamsheet.

Asked about Perez’s future, McClaren said: “His career is definitely best served here.

“He’s getting development, a good education, the right training and most important of all, he’s playing. It’s important he keeps playing, and it’s also important that he’s supported and loved.

“Here, the fans love him, his team-mates love him and we love him too. It’s a great environment for Ayoze to develop.”

The length of Perez’s contract was never disclosed when he joined for a £1.5million fee, and McClaren says there are no discussions over a new deal for the Spain Under-21 international, despite his quicker-than-expected progress at the club.

“He’s under contract for a long while, so I don’t think it’s an issue at the moment,” said McClaren.

McClaren, however, knows he cannot offer any guarantees that the club will hold on to all its best players in January.

“January’s not here yet,” he said. “We’ll only know by the end of January, when we hold on to our best players.

“Ayoze is someone who is doing very well. He came here as a player with potential and played a little bit last season.

“It’s taken him a while to get going this season, but he’s certainly become an important player. I look at him, though, and he’s still got a long way to go.

“There’s a lot to do, but the potential is massive.

“He’s got to do it consistently every game – for 95 minutes – but that’s what we’re asking from every player. We’re wanting a front four who are consistently threatening, and he’s part of that.

“He has forced his way in. When I first came, I didn’t know a lot about him.

“There were other players in a similar position who I knew a lot more about.

“Ayoze had limited opportunities in pre-season, but he stuck at it, kept going and forced his way into things.”