Open Day at St. James’ Park yesterday also saw a day where Newcastle activated the release clauses in two players’ contracts – and we had never even been linked with either player this summer.
News early yesterday broke that Newcastle had activated the release clause in Hull City midfielder Mo Diame’s contract and that the 29 year-old Senegal International wanted to join Newcastle.
Mohamed Diame – Hull City midfielder
And then late in the day news came through that we had done the exact same with 26 year-old Aston Villa defender Ciaran Clark’s contract and that he also wanted to join Newcastle.
The release clause in Diame’s contract is around £4.5M and that in Ciaran’s contract is about £5M so Newcastle could get two very experienced players in for less than £10M – and that’s good business again from the club.
And the news this morning is that Newcastle are now hopeful signing both Mohamed Diame and Ciaran Clark before the end of the week when we play at Fulham in the first game of the Championship season.
Ciaran Clark – Aston Villa defender
And because other clubs will have now been alerted to the availability of these players, Newcastle are moving quickly to try to tie up both deals just as soon as possible.
The next step for both players would be to agree terms and then have them travel to Newcastle for their medicals, but Hull have offered new terms to Diame.
But he was not on the plane yesterday for Hull City’s tour of Austria, which is interesting.
The Hull Daily Mail this morning are saying they expect Diame to move to Newcastle maybe in the next 24 hours, even though Hull offered him a new three year deal yesterday.
They report Newcastle have taken advantage of the confusion at the club following Steve Bruce’s sudden departure last week and the fact they have still not appointed a new manager.
Newcastle are said to be offering Diame a bumper long term deal to move to Tyneside.
Aston Villa manager Roberto Di Matteo may also offer Ciaran a new deal and he still has four years left on his current contract at the only club he’s ever played for.
Only last week Di Matteo insisted Ciaran was going nowhere:
“Ciaran is a Villa man, a Villa boy,” “He has pledged his future to us, he will be staying with us.”
“He is very happy to be with us, to stay here. I know he has a long-term contract as well.”
Things can change very quickly in a week.
We will have to await new developments today, but Newcastle are still hoping they can get both players over the line before Friday.