Steve Bruce mentioned ‘one or two things bubbling away’ on Sunday after the York City friendly. His reference to being very short in the midfield hinted at other midfielders in addition to Joe Willock being targetted.
There have been reports since the weekend that Newcastle are in discussions for three midfielders. Conor Gallagher is a loan option with him not ready to break into Chelsea’s formidable midfield.
The other two targets would be permanent signings. Jens Cajuste is a Swedish international playing for the Danish club Midtjylland. The 21-year-old fits Newcastle’s profile but would come at a steep price.
French club Rennes have already had a £10m bid knocked back forcing them to move on to other targets. Midtjylland are holding out for around £12-13m for their defensive midfielder with five Premier League clubs including Newcastle on his trail.
Last night, news surfaced that Newcastle were back in for Southampton’s Mario Lemina. Newcastle exited talks last month after Mike Ashley refused to sanction a cash deal for the 27-year-old.
The Mail claimed The Magpies are in discussions over a £4m deal while offering Lemina a three-year contract. However, The Athletic is reporting that Southampton want £8m for the player they paid over £15m for in 2017.
That could change everything Lemina is no longer a bargain at that fee considering he has just one year left on his contract.
This is a distressing update for a club that has made no first-team additions ahead of next season. If Ashley is willing to part with £8m for Lemina then great. Watford and Nice are also in the running so the competition could keep his price tag higher than initially reported.
This higher fee may only serve to delay Lemina’s departure. He has not been handed a squad number at St Mary’s though has been involved in training. Maybe Newcastle can split the difference with a £6m offer to get Lemina in quickly.
The Chronicle claims Bruce is confident of two or three signings within the next couple of weeks. But with the window open until August 31st, Ashley may be tempted to wait it out to see if he can lower the price tags of some of his targets.
Whatever the case may be, nothing seems imminent at the moment.