After PIF’s takeover of Newcastle United was confirmed a number of months ago, we were all expectant and excited to see the type of talent they could lure to St James’ Park.
Sadly, and rather unsurprisingly, however, they have found life difficult during the winter.
January is always a tricky time to recruit and the club’s new owners are finding that our swiftly.
News broke on Wednesday that Newcastle were trying to complete a deal to bring Jesse Lingard to the club.
As a result, the Toon are considering making moves for two other players, one of which is Tottenham’s Dele Alli.
That’s according to 90min who report that the England international is an alternative to Lingard this winter.
It’s thought Spurs had set an asking price of £25m according to a separate report last year.
A few years ago Darren Anderton was incredibly effusive in his praise for Dele, hailing the creative midfielder as a “freak of a talent.”
Indeed, that talent is clearly still lurking in the 25-year-old but there is a sense that he needs a fresh start elsewhere in order to discover that.
After all, the playmaker has scored just twice in all competitions this term and has only registered one assist too.
That is a far cry from the numbers we saw him rack up in the early stages of his career. In 2015/16, Dele amassed as many as ten goals and nine assists in the top-flight, then went even better in the campaign after that, scoring 18 times with another nine assists to his name.
2017/18 was also productive for the attacking midfielder who racked up nine goals and 11 assists.
With that kind of dynamism in mind, he could well become Newcastle’s next Paul Gascoigne if he finds his form again.
Gazza was a wonderful player in his prime and scored 133 times during his career.
The duo have also been compared previously by none other than Barcelona manager, Xavi. He once said: “There are some very promising young English midfield players and there is no doubt he is very special.
“He is very talented, very technical. I can understand why the Tottenham fans are hoping he is the next Paul Gascoigne.
“For me, Gascoigne was an inspiration when I was developing, one of the best midfield players I have ever seen. It is important not to put pressure on Dele with these comparisons but I can see why fans are excited.”
Of course, his form has subsided since that comparison but there is certainly a belief that he can get back to his best with new tools and resources.
Newcastle must make that happen.