This article is part of Football FanCast’s Transfer Focus series, which provides opinion and analysis on recent transfer news…
According to Sky Sports, newly-appointed Newcastle manager Steve Bruce is set to sit down with Sean Longstaff over the coming days and inform him that he remains a key part of his plans for next season – despite speculation of a move to Manchester United.
Reports in recent weeks had suggested that Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side were very much interested in luring the midfielder to Old Trafford, and that the Magpies had set an asking price of around £50m to sell him.
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Following the departure of Rafa Benitez as manager however, Sky Sports now report that Bruce is expected to tell Longstaff that he does not want him to leave this summer.
The report adds that whilst the 21-year-old would be keen on talking to United if the two clubs could agree a fee, he would not push for a move out of St James’ Park.
Is this the final nail in the coffin for United’s pursuit of Longstaff? A reported move for the midfielder feels like it has been dragging on for eternity, with no end in sight.
But as United shudder over the Magpies’ asking price, and now with Bruce’s reported intentions on keeping him for next season, it could well be the perfect time to move on from the 21-year-old.
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The transfer deadline is fast approaching, and United simply can’t afford to be taken on a wild goose chase by either Newcastle or Longstaff, and must take a quick and firm decision. If the midfielder is so pivotal to Solskjaer’s plans, then it’s time to put their money where their mouth is. If Longstaff is perceived to be a ‘bonus’ signing that could be the cherry on top, then the Red Devils would do well to start prioritising other targets.
The endless pursuits of both Longstaff and Maguire have overwhelmed United’s summer plans and it’s about time they take charge of the situation. The latest development surrounding the former could be the catalyst for them to finally do so.