The next three Newcastle United deals – and an early exit
Stand-in captain Trippier agreed a one-year extension to his deal in January, while midfielder Almiron, this season’s top scorer, was rewarded for his form with a new three-and-a-half year deal last month.
And the hope on Tyneside is that Bruno Guimaraes, a revelation since his move to St James’s Park last January, will agree a new long-term contract at the club.
The 25-year-old midfielder, under contract until 2026, was asked last week if he could see himself staying at United in the long-term.
“When I signed, (I thought) I would like to put my name in the club’s story,” said the midfielder, who the North East Football Writers’ Association’s Player of the Year for 2022.
“I think I’m doing it, but, of course, to get my name there, I need to win a title. I know what a title means for the club’s story.
“People grow up and they never see Newcastle as champions. My motivation here is to win a title for the club.”
A new deal for Guimaraes is on the agenda at Newcastle, though Eddie Howe, when asked if any more contract extensions were in the pipeline last week, suggested nothing was close.
“You’ve caught me off guard there – not that I can think of,” said United’s head coach.
Deal them in
Guimaraes, like Trippier and Almiron, ticks all the right boxes for Howe, who looks at a player’s attitude and character as well as his footballing talent.
“I think when you discuss new contracts with players, there’s so much that goes into it,” said Howe, who himself agreed a new “long-term” deal last summer after the club finished 11th in the Premier League.
“Of course, you need the talent, and the player to be good enough to be part of your long-term future but also you want the right attitudes and characters to take with you on the journey.
“The players you mentioned (Trippier and Almiron) have all those characteristics.
“I think Miggy’s been excellent this season. He deserves his new deal, a real team player, and he’s got a real connection with the supporters. I think that’s a really positive story.
“Tripps, likewise. I’ve spoken many times about how well he’s done this season.”
The next in line
Howe will be keen to secure more players on longer deals.
Fabian Schar and Dan Burn are among those players whose deals are due to expire at the end of next season.
Schar, sidelined by former head coach Steve Bruce before his dismissal, has been a hugely-influential player for Howe.
The 31-year-old defender – who was praised by Pep Guardiola last weekend – was recalled to the starting XI for his first game in charge, and he hasn’t looked back since then.
Defender Burn, meanwhile, has thrived at his boyhood club since joining from Brighton and Hove Albion last January.
The 30-year-old signed a two-and-a-half year deal at the time, and his contractual situation will need to be addressed.
Striker Callum Wilson and defender Jamaal Lascelles are also out of contract in the summer of 2024.
Those players whose deals expire at the end of this season face a less certain future at United – though one could certainly stay at St James’ Park.
Paul Dummett, Matt Ritchie, Mark Gillespie, Ciaran Clark and Matty Longstaff are out of contract at the end of the campaign along with Loris Karius, who joined the club earlier this season on a short-term deal after Karl Darlow, since loaned to Hull City, suffered an injury in training.
Karius’ contract has since been extended until the summer, and the 29-year-old is set for more talks over his longer-term future in the coming months.
Speaking after making his debut in the Carabao Cup final against Manchester United at Wembley late last month, the former Liverpool goalkeeper said: “Whatever’s to come (in the future), I don't know right now.
"I'm still hungry, and I feel like I've still got a lot of years to play, and I've shown (against Manchester United) that I don't need to hide anything – and that I can still perform at this level."
Clark, on loan at Sheffield United, will leave Newcastle at the end of the season, while winger Matt Ritchie’s also expected to move on in search of regular first-team football.
Ritchie, once a regular starter, has had a different role this season. Speaking in December, the 33-year-old said: “I’m ready when called upon. I feel like I can bring a lot to the group still, I feel valued within the group, and I’m fit and ready to go, if needed.
“I’m well aware that the boys have been flying, and times may have changed in terms of what it was for me maybe two years ago at the club. I’m a realist. I understand that my role may have changed within the squad – but I’m all in.”
The future of fourth-choice goalkeeper Gillespie – who hasn’t made a first-team appearance since September 2020 – also seemingly lies away from St James’s Park, while injuries, and the form of others, have limited 31-year-old defender Dummett to just one Carabao Cup start this season.
Longstaff, meanwhile, suffered a season-ending injury playing for loan club Colchester United earlier this season. The 22-year-old midfielder ruptured his anterior cruciate ligament on Boxing Day.
An early exit
Ryan Fraser, signed as a free agent in the summer of 2020, has more than two years left on his contract – but the winger doesn’t have a future at United.
Revealingly, Howe said last week: “I made the decision to concentrate on players that are committed to Newcastle. For the benefit of the group, I’ve made that call.”