Newcastle have some key players whose current contracts are getting far too close to expiring. They have others who should get improved deals, but players like Isaac Hayden, Matt Ritchie, and Fabian Schar all are on contracts that expire in two years. While 19-year-old Matty Longstaff’s deal runs only through next summer.
We have heard precious little about a new deal for Fabian Schar, which is concerning. He should be at the top of the list, in our opinion.
At 27-years-old he is in his prime, and we would expect the club to make him one of the highest-paid players. On merit, he certainly deserves to be rewarded.
There have been recent reports this week that Matty Longstaff is in negotiations. There should be no issues with Matty signing; however, we could envision him waiting a bit to see how involved in the first team he becomes.
The Matt Ritchie situation is a lot more complicated as it is likely going to take a compromise on Ritchie’s part to stay at the club. At 30-years-old, Newcastle are not going to want to give Ritchie too long of a deal.
While this could be Matt’s last big contract, he is going to want to do what is best for his future. So we expect this one to linger for a bit.
The subject of contract talks was broached in the Chronicle’s Q&A yesterday. According to Mark Douglas, the process is ongoing. Though he suspects that Martin Dubravka and Isaac Hayden will be the first dominos to fall:
Newcastle started contract talks with several first-teamers after the summer transfer window closed and I’d expect Martin Dubravka and Isaac Hayden to be the first to come to agreements. Both are moving in the right direction although there’s still work to be done.
Around three weeks ago, Martin Dubravka revealed that he was close to signing a new contract. This is what Martin said at that time:
“I’m happy here. Since I came here, people have treated me really well. I can say that I feel at home here. I’m glad that people think that I can stay here for the longer-term.
“It’s such a big honor for me. Hopefully, we can keep our players in the squad, our leaders, and we can build on this.
“We’re in talks. I’m close. That’s what I can say.”
A report came out a few days after these comments that Martin’s new deal could double his wages to £70k/week. We have not heard much since, but it does seem like Martin is close to signing an improved contract.
Isaac Hayden has also been open about being in talks with Newcastle. Unlike Dubravka, though, Isaac’s deal is a little more pressing as his current one will expire in 2021.
In late August, this is what Isaac said about committing to Newcastle:
“I want to commit because it’s the right thing to do, because the club is going in the right direction and because the club value me in a certain way.
“There has to be a continuous goal to improve.
“I always want to improve and better myself; I want to play with better players and, if that means more money is being pumped into this club, then that can only be a good thing.
“I’m happy to have conversations about a new contract, as I’ve said to the manager and the club, but I have to be valued in the right way.”
With the uncertainty surrounding Rafa Benitez’s contract throughout the past year, it seems that some of the players have been put on the back burner. The club really need to get to work on signing these players quickly.
The January window is fast approaching and if players like Fabian Schar just have a year-and-a-half remaining on their contracts, it could put the club in a precarious situation if another team comes in with a bid.
The best case scenario would see Schar, Hayden, Dubravka, Ritchie, the Longstaff brothers, and goalkeeper Freddie Woodman all tied down for years to come.