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Report – Newcastle Preparing A Bid For Defensive Target



There was a report last month that Newcastle were considering launching an £8m bid for Celtic defender Kristoffer Ajer. The recently turned 23-year-old is out of contract in 2022 and reluctant to sign a new deal.

Ajer has made over 170 appearances at Celtic Park since joining from Norwegian club Start almost 5 years ago. The 6’6″ center-back now desires the challenge of the English Premier League, which could mean Celtic have to cash in on their star defender this summer.

The Mail is now reporting that Newcastle are ready to ‘press ahead’ with an £8m offer for the Norwegian international.

Celtic reportedly value Ajer at around £25m but face the prospect of him leaving for nothing next summer. They only paid around £500k for Ajer when he was a teenage prospect so they’ll still get a healthy profit on him even if he’s sold for much less than their valuation.

It’s doubtful Celtic would accept £8m for Ajer early in the summer. They’ll want to drum up as much interest as possible if it becomes clear he’ll see out his contract. However, money may not be readily available for most clubs after a season played behind closed doors.

It seems that Ajer has his heart set on the Premier League so that should narrow the competition for the young center-back. He would be an outstanding signing for less than £10m if Newcastle can somehow make it happen.

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216 comments so far

  • Adamn_92

    Apr 29, 2021 at 10:57 AM

    Comment #1

    Apologies for the repost:

    I’ll happily hold my hands up and say I got the whole Jones situation completely wrong. I thought it would have a huge negative effect, seems like it wasn’t Bruce’s choice and thought they’d be clashes and team divide over it. If anything the opposite has happened, the team seem to finally be playing for each other more and seem more cohesive as a unit. Doesn’t seem to be much of a conflict between Bruce and Jones either, if anything our change in play would suggest Jones has been allowed to get stuck in. So thank god I was wrong! I’ve said it a few times, but I still think Ritchie deserves huge credit for our recent turn around. No doubting Jones’ impact now, but Ritchie coming back in was crucial in my eyes.

    6
  • Not another deJong

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:00 AM

    Comment #2

    Just a fan

    Not to be offensive and I know you did not choose it, but you avitar is like a talking arsehole!!

    1
  • TheTinman

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:03 AM

    Comment #4

    There you go GT Neil to the rescue!

    1
  • Wor B

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:09 AM

    Comment #5

    NadJ

    lol, dogs and their owners.

    0
  • carltoon

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:11 AM

    Comment #6

    Welcome back Rob, you’ve been missed 😀

    4
  • Wor B

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:16 AM

    Comment #7

    Pit Yacker

    If you could afford to live in Hale Barns you must have been the over time king at the pit!

    0
  • Lee Charnley Bunga Party

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:17 AM

    Comment #8

    Was chatting to my Celtic pals about him and he would be surprised if they got 8 million for him this summer!

    Still not 100% sure of his best position whether its a centre back or defensive midfielder

    He might be a shrewd addition in a 3 at the back formation

    0
  • anxer

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:18 AM

    Comment #9

    If we do manage to sign Ajer I hope he’s better than the last old firm centre back we bought, because Boumsong was terrible. At £8m he’s cheaper than Boumsong too.

    4
  • toonbrother

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:20 AM

    Comment #10

    The last thing we need is another central defender. We already have about 5 on the books

    What we need is another creative player to ease our over reliance on Asm

    We also need a proper holding midfielder to sit in front of the back four, help us retain possession and play out from the back

    We should go for harit and someone like anguissa

    1
  • geordietom

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:21 AM

    Comment #11

    TIN …

    as if by magic neil saves me 😀

    1
  • Lee Charnley Bunga Party

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:22 AM

    Comment #12

    @Toonbrother

    Agree although we could do with a bit more pace Clark and Fernandez could be upgraded although not sure if Ajer would be that upgrade mind you?

    Anguissa would be great Bisouma from Brighton would also be great just players who can travel distances quickly when they win the ball to setup attacks

    1
  • toonbrother

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:23 AM

    Comment #13

    @lee Charnley
    Wow That’s telling
    If your mate doesn’t think he’s worth 8million (which is pennies in today’s market) , he must be a really poor player

    We need to go all out for A world class holding /defensive midfielder

    Someone like anguissa , sangare or zubeldia
    Shelvey is terrible in the role

    0
  • RobLeenio

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:23 AM

    Comment #14

    Cheers carltoon and Mund, thanks for the welcome.

    Adamn_92 I don’t think there was any right or wrong at the time, he’d had a disastrous spell as manager of Luton but seemed well respected as a coach so we were all a bit unsure about what actual impact he could have.

    Just for the record, I think Bruce had nothing to do with the decision to bring him in, no matter which way the club tried to spin it.

    I actually think it says more about the ability of Bruce’s original coaching staff – and Bruce’s ability to pick competent coaches – than it does about Jones’ own competence. It was clear to all fans what needed to change, how did it take Jones coming in for Bruce and his team to change it?

    6
  • geordietom

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:23 AM

    Comment #15

    toonbrother…

    I think we need to add a midfielder who can pick a pass as well , and another pacy centre forward …

    3
  • geordietom

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:24 AM

    Comment #16

    Robleenio …

    welcome back mate , did you enjoy your break ?

    2
  • toonbrother

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:25 AM

    Comment #17

    @lee charnley
    Agree Fede is getting old but he is still a very good defender
    Don’t forget we also have lascelles , dummett, Clark, schar and Hayden all of whom can play centre back
    Long story short :the CB position isnT a pressing concern

    2
  • anxer

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:28 AM

    Comment #18

    Regarding the effect of Jones arrival on the squad. If he has a big input on training and can implement a more modern regimen, hopefully we will have fewer injuries next season too.

    The difference in the number of injuries we get now compared to under Rafa is striking, although COVID and the players being a couple years older could play a part in that too.

    6
  • Lee Charnley Bunga Party

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:32 AM

    Comment #19

    @Toonbrother

    No it isn’t but there should be no reason why they club can’t be in a position to upgrade a lot of positions this summer although you imagine Ashley will be pleading poverty again

    If Bruce is allowed to pick will probably end up with Bartley and Lundstram on a free…..

    2
  • toonbrother

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:37 AM

    Comment #20

    @lee chArnley our limited budget, is all the more reason to focus on areas that are of more immediate concern
    A creative player to take the pressure off Asm and a press-resistant holding midfield are far more critical to the team than a central defender

    1
  • Moonraker15

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:40 AM

    Comment #21

    25 years since KK’s “I would luv it if we beat them” rant on Sky Sports!
    Omg those were exciting times for us and that’s where the bar was set!
    What a fantastic team he built! Absolute legend!

    7
  • Lee Charnley Bunga Party

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:42 AM

    Comment #22

    I do think if we replaced Shelvey in the team with Willock in the current formation we would see a far better balanced team

    You would then have Longstaff,Willock and Almiron all hounding teams with energy and putting tackles in that would make a huge difference to how we setup

    Willock can also travel with the ball rapid which helps with transitions

    1
  • Lee Charnley Bunga Party

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:45 AM

    Comment #23

    I will say for the record Shelvey is 100% trying every week recently but he just doesn’t have the mobility needed to cover its why there is such a massive gap in midfield which leaves us wide open

    Someone with pace in there would plug those gaps and allow us to win the ball back quicker

    6
  • onmeedsun

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:45 AM

    Comment #24

    We need to have more options than ASM to win games next season. And we need Fraser to be fit for the whole season. Agree about pacey centre midfielder and striker.

    1
  • Mund

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:46 AM

    Comment #25

    For anyone on Twitter. You got to be in it to win it 🙂

    https://mobile.twitter.com/NUFC/status/1385168921167335424

    0
  • Adamn_92

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:47 AM

    Comment #26

    Robleenio,

    True, it was a very unknown situation at the time so quite hard to read into it all. I agree with you though, no matter how the club try to paint it I think Bruce had no say on it. Seems like it was a cheaper alternative than sacking Bruce and thankfully it seems to have worked. It would appear that Jones is someone who is better suited to coaching rather than managing.

    It’s just nice to see someone come in and show how incompetent the Steve’s are.

    2
  • onmeedsun

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:48 AM

    Comment #27

    Moonraker
    I remember it like yesterday.
    KK was the reason I fell in love with NUFC, and Beardo. 83/84 season when those 2 and the Waddler ripped up the league. Of course the media ridiculed him, but as a toon fan KK nailed it for me by calling out that bully Fergie. Wouldn’t change a thing.

    3
  • Pit yacker

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:50 AM

    Comment #28

    Wor B – I did my time in the wilmslow massive 🙂

    1
  • Mund

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:50 AM

    Comment #29

    onmeedsun

    As much as I loved the passion from KK he played right into Fergie’s hands when he lost it. Fergie was king of the mind games and he certainly got to KK.

    1
  • onmeedsun

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:51 AM

    Comment #30

    Shelvey is a conundrum as he can do a job against the lesser teams, but against the quicker teams gets found out as he isn’t mobile and gets less time on the ball. I’d keep him but we need other options as well.

    0
  • Adamn_92

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:53 AM

    Comment #31

    Takeover or no takeover, I really hope we manage to get Willock permanently next season. He’s only going to get better and I can see him having a good understanding with Almiron and ASM if they’re played together more frequently.

    1
  • onmeedsun

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:53 AM

    Comment #32

    Pit yacker
    My best man lived in Wilmslow for 25 years.
    Boro fan but had 4 season tickets at Old Trafford so all his kids are mancs.

    1
  • onmeedsun

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:55 AM

    Comment #33

    Mund
    But KK is a mirror image of most toon fans. We lose it on a regular basis and allow ourselves to get carried away, but then struggle to handle the downslope. It’s the club’s strength but also a weakness.

    6
  • Moonraker15

    Apr 29, 2021 at 11:57 AM

    Comment #34

    Onmeedsun

    Absolutely he was so honest that he spoke from the heart and for all of us!

    It’s a pity Boro couldn’t have beaten them and toon go on to win it, but so be it!

    They were great times though and I think we all knew we’d probably lost our chance of winning it with that team!

    2
  • toonbrother

    Apr 29, 2021 at 12:01 PM

    Comment #35

    Shelvey is a gifted creative passer
    But creative passing isn’t what’s needed to play out from the back
    Mobility, positioning and press-resistance are far more important qualities in a holding midfielder
    Whenever Shelvey receives the ball under pressure he immediately goes for the Hail Mary pass (which invariably goes nowhere)
    That said, Shelvey’s work rate is actually very good.
    He just lacks the skillset to play in front of the back four
    Willock is a box to box midfielder but he isn’t a holding midfielder either

    3
  • lochinvar

    Apr 29, 2021 at 12:01 PM

    Comment #36

    Strategic partners eh ?
    All with AMERICAN connections.
    Wonder what prompted this.
    Maybe the demise of the ESL or is it a vehicle for the reincarnation of the ESL.

    Mega dollars in play here.
    Needs scrutiny.

    BT has confirmed it is in talks with several companies about the future of its sports broadcasting arm.
    The group says it is exploring “ways to generate investment, strengthen our sports business” to “help take it to the next stage in its growth”.
    BT said early talks were being held “with a number of select strategic partners”.

    It is not clear if this means selling a stake in BT Sport or a full sale of the division, which was launched in 2013.

    BT added that the discussions were confidential and “may or may not lead to an outcome”.

    The Daily Telegraph reported on Wednesday that Amazon, Disney and Dazn were in talks with BT, but that an unnamed British broadcaster might also be in the running to buy the sports business.

    The telecoms giant did not confirm which firms are involved.

    Amazon and Dazn declined to comment, while Disney did not immediately respond to the BBC’s request.

    1
  • toonbrother

    Apr 29, 2021 at 12:04 PM

    Comment #37

    I think Longstaff’s contract winds up in 2022
    I doubt he will renew it which means he will go for free if we don’t sell him this summer
    Shame as he is a good player who suffered from Bruce’s mismanagement

    0
  • RobLeenio

    Apr 29, 2021 at 12:11 PM

    Comment #38

    Cheers Tom, contributing regularly on this blog is a proper commitment, I just didn’t have time for a while – and maybe don’t now either, but I wanted to come back and say hello.

    Hope you’re well.

    On ASM, he’s that rare kind of player that makes things happen and it’s telling that other teams and their fans are drooling over him. He’s vital to us, takeover or not, as the kind of player we should be looking to build around.

    Willock is potentially as important for us, too, if we can do a deal for him. We’ve been lacking a true box-to-box midfielder for ages and he is that guy – strong in the tackle, quick in transition, able to spot a pass and find his man and takes up good positions around the opposition box. He reminds me of Rob Lee – no higher compliment in my eyes, though he’s still young and has a bit to learn.

    4
  • magscar

    Apr 29, 2021 at 12:20 PM

    Comment #39

    Robleenio

    Can I add my welcome back to the others

    When i returned a few weks ago you were no longer on ( nor Jib) and Tsunki was about to taj=ke his leave but none seemed connected

    Jib situation has been clarified by posts since but no one mentioned your exit so good to know you’re OK

    Sabaticals from here including not even reading i can recommend

    1
  • Mund

    Apr 29, 2021 at 12:21 PM

    Comment #40

    onmeedsun

    Mate I wouldn’t change our passion down this way for the world mate. It’s what I live for bud. I’m proud to be this way.

    I wouldn’t change KK for anything it’s just frustrating Fergie picked at that knowing the reaction he would get and because of those mind games we lost the league.

    0
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