A major Newcastle United transfer claim has emerged regarding PIF’s plans for the summer transfer window…
Sky Sports reporter Keith Downie has claimed that the Tyneside club will be looking to sign a central midfielder ahead of the 2022/23 campaign.
When asked about Sean Longstaff’s contract situation, the journalist outlined the size task facing the academy prospect to get into the team.
Speaking to Football FanCast, Downie said: “It’s probably a bit similar to the Paul Dummett situation and quite keen to have homegrown players around the place and in the dressing room every day and (it will) be up to Sean Longstaff to prove that he can play in the first team but he’s going to be up against you know, top talent in there in the shape of Bruno and the shape of Joelinton.
“Shelvey’s got another year left I would expect them to add another midfielder as well. So you know there’ll be real competition for him.”
Newcastle head coach Eddie Howe will surely be delighted by this news, as he would no doubt love to have more options at his disposal in the middle of the park.
Longstaff is out of contract this summer and the 24-year-old has not given a great account of himself throughout Howe’s time in charge.
In the Premier League this season, the Englishman has averaged an unimpressive SofaScore rating of 6.62 across 22 top-flight outings. He has recorded SofaScore ratings of 6.4 or lower in three of his last five appearances and has not achieved a rating higher than 6.9 since 23 October against Crystal Palace – before the ex-Bournemouth manager arrived at St James’ Park.
The midfielder has not shown enough to nail down a regular place in the team and, as his match ratings prove, he has struggled badly when he has been needed to fill in.
Therefore, Howe will be buzzing to have another midfielder signed in the next transfer window, as Longstaff – at his current level – is unable to provide significant competition to the likes of Joe Willock, Jonjo Shelvey, Bruno Guimaraes and Joelinton.
Injuries and suspensions may cause the quartet to miss a few matches at times throughout the next campaign, which means that it is important to have players who can step up in their place. This is why the Newcastle head coach will be keen to bring in a fresh option in this position, as Longstaff has proven not good enough to fulfil that role.