West Bromwich Albion are interested in a deal to bring Matty Longstaff to The Hawthorns this summer.
That’s according to a report by Chronicle Live, who claim that Newcastle United are willing to sanction the temporary departure of the 21-year-old in the summer transfer window, with Steve Bruce recognising the fact that the central midfielder needs to be playing regular minutes next season in order to further his development.
The report added that, as a result of his availability on loan, there is a great deal of interest in the former England under-20 international, with Anderlecht, Norwich City and West Brom all thought to be lining up an offer for the Magpies youngster.
There has been something of an exodus from the West Brom midfield since the end of last season. With all three loan signings of Okay Yokuslu, Conor Gallagher and Ainsley Maitland-Niles returning to their parent clubs, as well as both Rekeem Harper and Sam Field leaving the club on permanent deals this summer, Valerien Ismael has been left with a distinct lack of depth in the middle of the park.
As such, the position would very much appear to be something of an issue for the 45-year-old ahead of the club’s upcoming campaign, but the possible addition of Longstaff would be a very big step in the right direction for the Baggies boss.
Having burst onto the Newcastle United scene back in the club’s 2019/20 Premier League campaign, scoring the winner against Manchester United on his top-flight debut, the £4.5m-rated youngster went on to make another eight appearances in the league that season, scoring one further goal, creating one big chance for his teammates and averaging a solid SofaScore match rating of 6.61.
As a result of this breakthrough season, and with his contract at St. James’ Park being set to expire, interest was high in the midfielder the following summer, with Udinese reported to have offered a five-year deal to the man Martin Keown dubbed “like a Paul Scholes“.
However, after ultimately deciding to remain with Newcastle, Longstaff’s progress appeared to stagnate somewhat last season, with Bruce affording the midfielder just four Premier League starts, as well as one further appearance from the bench.
However, this lack of first team game-time in no way diminishes the potential the £24k-per-week man quite clearly possesses. It something from which Albion could well benefit greatly in their push for promotion next season should they go on to secure a deal for the midfielder this summer.