Newcastle have nine games remaining to salvage their place in the Premier League. The only remit now for Steve Bruce and his squad is to outpace Fulham over the campaign’s final two months.
If accomplished, that would be a massive relief for Newcastle supporters. However, unless the club is sold, it’s hard to see how next season will be much better.
The poor state of finances at many EPL clubs could see limited movement in the transfer window. Newcastle reportedly have been hit hard due to the restrictive Covid measures that has prevented any fans from attending games this season.
If Newcastle do survive, and Mike Ashley cannot resurrect the takeover, or find another buyer, there could be a relegation battle repeat next season. We could see Bruce still in charge with barely any funds to improve the squad.
Though if Ashley comes to his senses and brings in a better fit at head coach, Newcastle could be ok even without massive improvements in the team. The squad is decent enough for a midtable finish with a few additions.
Another striker is definitely a priority. Both Dwight Gayle and Andy Carroll are in the final months of their contracts. The loss of Callum Wilson has hit this squad hard as he has no replacement in the ranks. Strikers cost money, so Newcastle will have to be creative in finding a suitable backup for Wilson.
The midfield is also an area that could be improved, especially if Joe Willock’s loan spell can’t be extended. Though maybe a new head coach can get the best out of the Longstaff brothers, whose careers have stagnated under Bruce.
Newcastle also need to get younger at center-back. Jamaal Lascelles is the youngest of the group at 27. Both Fabian Schar and Federico Fernandez are in the final years of their contracts, though it has been reported that Newcastle have options on both to extend for another year.
Kelland Watts is likely another year away from impacting the first-team. While he could possibly do a job as cover, it may be best served for him to spend another year out on loan, but this time in the Championship.
The Mail is reporting that Newcastle are lining up an £8m bid for Celtic’s Kristoffer Ajer. The Norwegian international will have just one year left on his contract in the summer.
The 22-year-old reportedly wants to test his mettle in the Premier League after five seasons in Scotland. He’s made 170 appearances at Celtic with 6 goals and 5 assists. If Newcastle can find the funds to bring him in, he would be an excellent capture over the summer.
Celtic rate Ajer at closer to £35m. However, with his contract talks stalled, Celtic may have to sell their star defender to the highest bidder. There will be competition for the 19-time capped Norwegian from other Premier League clubs in the mix as well as some from Italy.
These are the types of deals Newcastle need to make this summer. Getting excellent value for the limited money available. Newcastle, of course, must first do whatever it takes to retain their place in the league over the next few months.