England under-21 international Connor Whickam may still be fancied by Newcastle manager Alan Pardew.
18 year old Ipswich striker Connor Whickham
And Alan has already had contact with the player, because he signed Connor when he was manager of Reading through 2003, but the London club released Wickham in 2006, and that’s when he was signed by Ipswich Town.
There are a number of top Premier League clubs tracking Connor Whickham, and therefore we’d be very surprised if he ended up at Newcastle.
Connor was one of the 40 players named in this summer’s provisional England Under-21 squad that’s off to Denmark, and of course England first teamers Andy Carroll and Jack Wilshere were also named in that squad – and it seems like England may be wanting to win that tournament.
Ipswich manager Paul Jewell says he doesn’t want to sell Connor:
“I’m not looking to sell Connor Wickham, and I don’t think he is looking to leave, but if someone came in with a silly offer and he wanted to go we would have to listen to it.”
In other words please make us a ridiculously high offer for Connor and we’ll sell him.
Spurs and and Arsenal are interested in Connor Whickham, and the only advantage of the 18 year-old moving to Tyneside, is he’d get a lot more playing time than moving to either of those London clubs, where top Internationals are seen weekly on the bench.
28 year old Cardiff striker Jay Bothroyd
Another striker that has been mentioned in the local papers today is Cardiff City striker Jay Bothroyd, whose contract at the Welsh club runs out in the summer, but we wonder if Jay is talented enough to be a success at Newcastle?
The Islington-born 6’3″ striker turns 29 tomorrow, and the three year contract he signed in 2008, when he moved from Wolves, ends on June 30th.
Indeed, Newcastle were said to be after Bothroyd in January, but that deal was not done, and you have to think Newcastle are at least talking to the player, since Alan Pardew has said today the club are talking to several free agents at the moment.
Bothroyd has a decent scoring record this season, with 18 goals in 35 matches, but we have to remember that’s in England’s second division, and it’s a much harder proposition in the Premier League.
24 year old Reading striker Shane Long
A third player Newcatsle are said to be interested in is Shane Long of Reading.
The 24 year-old has played 196 times for Reading since 2005 and scored 52 goals, and the Irish lad has had a great season this season with 23 goals in 46 appearances, but of course that’s in England’s second division.
Shane has 19 caps for Ireland and 6 goals, and Newcastle have been interested in this player for over a year now.
Of the three strikers, Connor Whickam would be the most exiting buy, since the lad is a very good player already, and at only 18, he could become a lot better playing at Newcastle.
Bothroyd is good value, because he would come for nothing, and Shane Long could well be one of those players that can make the class jump to the Premier League, and Shane is certainly one of the best players in England’s second division.
What do you think of these three strikers?