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Squad Overhaul Planned In January As English Defender Named Top Target

On Friday, it was revealed that Newcastle’s new board would target players with Premier League experience entering the final years of their contracts. Their plan was to supplement these more economical signings with a few marquee names.

The list of targets has been plentiful over the past 48 hours with a handful of stars touted as being the new regime’s first big signing in January. We’ve already had Barcelona’s Philippe Coutinho and Napoli’s Kalidou Koulibaly cited as top winter targets.

The Telegraph’s Luke Edwards has pinpointed Burnley center-back James Tarkowski as the likely choice to become one of the first players to spark Newcastle’s revolution. The 28-year-old certainly meets the criteria with 166 Premier League matches under his belt while in the final year of his contract.

Edwards reports that Tarkowski is very keen on the move. While Burnley boss Sean Dyche would love to keep his star defender at Turf Moor, he can do little to stand in his way as they could risk losing him for nothing next summer.

Manchester United forward Jesse Lingard is also of interest to Newcastle. Like Tarkowski, the 28-year-old’s contract ends next summer. However, his interest in coming to the North East is uncertain.

Lingard recently rejected a new deal at Old Trafford and has only had only one start this season, which was in the Carabao Cup defeat against West Ham. He spent the second half of last season on loan with The Hammers where he scored 9 goals and provided 5 assists.

Edwards also reports that the new owners believe every area of the pitch needs new blood. He says in addition to Tarkowski, a full-back, center-forward, central midfielder, and a winger could be targeted in January. That would, of course, mean a lot of the current squad would need to be moved out.

This winter we could see a grander version of 2013 when Newcastle added Moussa Sissoko, Mathieu Debuchy, Mapou Yanga-Mbiwa, Yoan Gouffran, Massadio Haidara, and Kevin Mbabu to the ranks.

149 comments so far

  • Corkypants

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:20 PM

    Comment #1

    Let’s go get mbabu back

  • Optimistic prime

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:23 PM

    Comment #2

    No to Lingard, yes to Tarkowski.

    I’m not sure Favre is the guy for Nufc.

    He reckons it’s 30% coaching and 70% tactics.

    Our players need way more coaching than that and their heads would explode with that much tactics after none.

  • Optimistic prime

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:26 PM

    Comment #3

    Bbc football focus for anyone who didn’t see it.


  • Assassins Inc

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:27 PM

    Comment #4

    All this talk about managers not wanting to come to Newcastle because it’s a rebuilding phase. lol can’t stop laughing at that statement.
    Managers that come to St James know the fans are one of the best in the world, the hospitality in Newcastle towards players and manager is like no other city.
    Now lets roll into the equation we are now the richest club in the world and this manager could become a legend and build a world class team, now let’s be honest, who wouldn’t want this. The next few weeks are going to be interesting indeed.
    It has to be a huge name and a bold statement from the new owners.

  • SholaShow

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:27 PM

    Comment #5

    Just looking at CBs alone.

    There is Koulibaly, Tarkowski, Skriniar and Milenkovic that all have contracts expiring by 2023.

    Wouldn’t make a bad 4 😆

  • Zhongguo Geordie

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:30 PM

    Comment #6

    I’ll repost since it’s relevant to the above article

    My opinion on Edward’s links

    Jesse Lingard (Manchester United)
    Had half a good season where every touch went in, but ten nediocre years before that. Too old. Not good long left at his mediocre level. Willock can do that anyway.

    James Tarkowski (Burnleyl
    Yes, could push on around better players. 29 for a defender isn’t bad.

    Aaron Ramsey (Juventus)
    No way. Huge wages. Injury prone. 5 years since he was at his prime.

    Ross Barkley (Chelsea)
    He’s finished. Seems to be an attitude problem. Wouldn’t want him when we had no money

    Eric Bailly (Manchester United)
    If cheap. Brought in because he has strength and pace. Not much else.

    Mason Holgate (Everton)
    If Benitez doesn’t rate a defender then stay clear.

    Callum Hudson-Odoi (Chelsea)
    Maybe. Never rated him that highly. Seems like the next Kakuta or Adu.

    Wilfried Zaha (Crystal Palace)
    Similar to ASM. Id rather Benrahama if we want a second mercurial winger.

    Kieran Trippier (Atletico Madrid)
    Good player.

    Dwight McNeil (Burnley)

    The men of the moment
    Ivan Toney (Brentford)

    Anthony Martial (Manchester United)

    David Brooks (Bournemouth
    Yes if he’s as good as he used to be.

    Pascal Gross (Brighton)
    Not as good as what we have.

    Tariq Lamptey (Brighton)
    Played about six games, looked great and been injured ever since. Avoid a guy with his speed who is already picking up injuries.

    It’s a really sh*t unimaginative list, and very similar to what I imagine Bruce would want. All known names that will fall into those a lazy scout like Bruce would be aware of from watching match of the day after last orders

  • Zhongguo Geordie

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:33 PM

    Comment #7

    I think Edwards has been chatting to his pal Bruce, and that’s Bruce’s list. There’s no imagination at all in that list. Just a list of big names not doing so well and peripheral England players.

  • the crown princes nashers

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:33 PM

    Comment #8

    ive an idea as a parting shot at our last owner, people going to the match is simple may cost a couple of quid but big blown up photos of pif, amanda and hubby along with the reuben bros and jamie, any thoughts ladies and gents

  • the crown princes nashers

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:34 PM

    Comment #9

    use the photos to block the shite direct signs forgot to mention that 🙂

  • Optimistic prime

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:36 PM

    Comment #10

    I’m thinking the next man might have a few ideas who he’d like as the spine of his team, especially given our current situation.

    Great being linked with so many but it’s just a giggle for me.

    It’s nice to browse the sweet shop with a pocket full of cash after being stuck outside looking through the window for years.

  • JP...from The Rock

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:37 PM

    Comment #11

    In this window I feel we should go all out for established stars outside the top 6 or good players of the top 6 that don’t seem to get in the first 11. This and grabbing the next ASM, Bruno Fernandes’ and Van Dijk’s of the world now that we can.

    This will give us a solid platform and spine of the team and come summer we can go for more World Class stars.

  • Assassins Inc

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:40 PM

    Comment #12

    I now know all these damn panelists don’t have balls.
    Well maybe a few, but this talk about Bruce given the chance to build a world class team so he can show what he can do is total b0ll0cks.
    What player wants to play for cabbage heed, you don’t purchase a club and trust 100s millions in a vegetable, let’s cut the shite, he’s done, he’s oout, it’s good night from me and it’s good night from him. Goodnight

  • The Ledge

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:41 PM

    Comment #13

    I would have scouts all over the Belgian and French leagues there is a lot of talent out there at smaller clubs

  • jane

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:42 PM

    Comment #14

    “When approving the takeover on Thursday, the Premier League said it has received legal assurances from the new owners that the Saudi state would not control Newcastle United and there would be punishments if it was proven otherwise.”

    wonder what the punishments would be.


  • JP...from The Rock

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:42 PM

    Comment #15

    Corkypants – I concur, we should bring Mbabu back too!!

    Gutted when Rafa sold him.

  • Mund

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:43 PM

    Comment #16

    Bit of N update Jail. It’s at 1.9M followers now.

    I fully expect sometime in the future to be at 20M+ NUFC followers

  • Optimistic prime

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:44 PM

    Comment #17

    Does anyone know if anyone is advising the new owners on potential DOF or managers?

    I’m sure they had names and plans but things have changed then this happened so fast I’m unsure they were ready.

  • SholaShow

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:46 PM

    Comment #18

    Frank McPartland is supposedly advising them.

  • cleveleysbob

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:50 PM

    Comment #19

    I was actually a bit embarrassed by George Caulkins capitulation to the human rights lobby.

    Saying that things in Saudi Arabia are disgusting or barbaric (whatever phrases he used) is not an example of knowledgeable journalism.

    I made my views clear in a post yesterday. Things are changing in SA, rights of women and penal code are being upgraded to be more palatable to current western tastes. These things should be encouraged and applauded. If all anyone does in this country is attack them at every opportunity, then we could be doing more harm than good. The report put out by the Newcastle Pride group was excellent as it talked about “showing SA how deal with minorities in this country” – Fabulous stuff, not knocking six bells out of them every time we get the chance.

    SA is opening up its country to tourism, does anyone seriously think that beheadings and stoning will be on show as a tourist “must see” like the bull fighting in Spain? They’re stopping these things, applaud them encourage them, stop kicking them at every opportunity.

    They are an ancient and proud society trying to change centuries of culture. Give them time, they have detractors in their own country trying to stop these reforms, worst thing we can do is give them ammunition to pelt their leadership with.

  • Big Archie

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:52 PM

    Comment #20

    I think it’s possible I may have just pissed myself.

    One comment says

    “Mason Holgate (Everton)
    If Benitez doesn’t rate a defender then stay clear.”

    I think we can all agree that we have a seriously crappy defence at the moment.
    Included in that crappy defence are Clark, Schar, Fernandez, and Manquillo with Jacob Murphy struggling at wing back.
    All bought by Benitez.

    Others who are no longer with us, and were deemed not good enough for the squad, are Yedlin, Daryl Murphy, Lejeune and Merino, also all brought in by our Spanish tactical genius.

    “If Benitez doesn’t rate a defender then stay clear”?
    I’d say if Benitez doesn’t think he’s any good we should snap him up!

  • fairscup

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:53 PM

    Comment #21

    New signings should be left to the new manager.

  • WLtoon

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:57 PM

    Comment #22

    New owners should bring in a couple of good scouts immediately, they could save a shed load of money, not that money is a problem, just saying.
    A few good kids with huge potential coming into the club with a relatively small budget layout could reap dividends in the future.
    Just a thought before i bugger off for a pint or 15.

  • JP...from The Rock

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:57 PM

    Comment #23

    Big Archie- “If Benitez doesn’t rate a defender then stay clear.”

    He messed up big time with Mbabu. Would defo have Mbabu back and is what we need now.

  • Adamn_92

    Oct 9, 2021 at 3:58 PM

    Comment #24

    Has anyone commented on the irony yet of the clubs who wanted to join a breakaway super league, complaining about our takeover damaging the image of the league lol

  • JohnJ

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:02 PM

    Comment #25

    Do you recall that player who said he wasn’t interested in joining Newcastle United ( what was his name again? ) well he can do a runner he’s no longer needed!!!

  • /%%/

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:08 PM

    Comment #26

    Surely the money being used to poach a Potter, Rodgers etc would be better spent towards persuading Conte, surely he’d jump at the chance of £10M pa.

  • kc2012

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:10 PM

    Comment #27

    Tarkowski would be a decent signing but for the right price. I’ve got a feeling all these moaning premier league teams will bump up the prices of their players for us now, kind of like they do with Man United who somehow paid £80m for Maguire just after Arsenal were quoted £60m for him, strange one.

    Mbabu, Koulibaly, Ramsey and a proven goal scorer or a winger with an end product (Zaha, Rafa Silva or Gelson Martin’s) in January would be a very good start and not unrealistic.

    Suppose it depends who our manager is at the time though. I’d love Antonio Conte or Roberto Martinez but have a feeling Gerrard might be in with a shout which would be a massive gamble although he’s worked wonders at Rangers (wouldn’t be my choice at all though).

    Anyway my Man United, West Ham and Everton supporting friends have been crying since we got taken over and have a guess what, I ABSOLUTELY LOVE IT!! Haha

  • cleveleysbob

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:10 PM

    Comment #28

    What I’m trying to say in a more concise nutshell is;

    Don’t judge SA by its past,
    Judge it by its current and future actions.

    There a slogan for NUFC fans everywhere.

  • cornishman

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:16 PM

    Comment #29

    I’m still pinching myself but if this is the real world and not a dream, Fabre for sure Tarkowski yes. As for the rest, get the coach in next week and let’s get cracking.
    Wow after 55 years a fan I can’t remember days like this, a kid in a toy shop ain’t the half of it.
    Phew, up the Toon

  • Steve Carney's Super Smirk

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:17 PM

    Comment #30

    Slightly off topic but I really hope Amanda’s had a word about KK and Shearer popping into the changing rooms before the Spurs game.

    Just a quick Henry V like Kev speech about opportunity, passion and making history.

  • SholaShow

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:17 PM

    Comment #31

    Lots of clubs aren’t in any position to bump up the price of their players.

    Many still suffering effects of Covid and because of the pandemic many more player contracts than usual have been left to run down.

    Burnley either sell Tarkowski for £10-15m in January or lose him for nothing 6 months later.

    Just take a look here to see the sheer amount of quality players whose contract are running out either summer 2022 or 2023 – https://www.transfermarkt.com/statistik/endendevertraege

  • Macas

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:18 PM

    Comment #32

    Big Archie
    That’s a very simplistic and somewhat inaccurate evaluation of those players, and our defence was a strong point while Rafa was here.
    Quite a few were signed at low prices due to the lack of funds available and all of them at the very least did a job for us.
    Jacob Murphy hasn’t been a great signing and took a long while to show what he can do, but he wasn’t signed by Benitez as a defender.
    Fernandez has been one of our best and most consistent players over previous seasons, and while Schar might look a little shaky at times he was signed for very little money and also scored a few very important goals for us.
    Lejeune was great for us until his injuries, and Merino wanted to leave, it wasn’t a question of us getting rid of him as he was a good player.
    Yedlin, Clark and Daryl Murphy were signed to help us get out of the Championship which they did, and none of them were terrible signings.
    Nobody was really impressed with the Manquillo signing at the time but he has improved and become a fairly steady performer.
    If the defence looks bad right now that might be more down to the current manager than the players, or the fact that they are a fair few years older now than when they were initially signed.

  • The Prince's Mate

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:22 PM

    Comment #33

    Hi all,just in from work again (I work 6 days per week) I’m miles behind on the blog and I suspect this has been mentioned dozens of times but…I STILL can’t believe what’s happened these last few days….some folks were spot on when,they suggested everything will be quiet…no news, no rumours etc then BAM it’s all over…signed sealed delivered….na,it hasn’t sunk in….maybe a couple of Becks and some cheeky glasses of malt later on might change my mind eh?!

  • Unused Substitute

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:24 PM

    Comment #34

    Big Archie @20: could the frailty of the defenders you’re complaining about be due to Bruce’s incompetence? Regardless, do consider sharing your footballing insights with Everton owners. May be they’ll hire you and release Rafa. We then can have him back.


  • jezza442

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:29 PM

    Comment #35

    Took me from Thursday to catch up and finally get time to comment,and all I have to say is WOW,just WOW! I has a funny feeling the CAT hearing may shake the premier league into action,but never dreamed it would be this quick,my ideas for new manager ,no idea
    New players,no idea
    To be honest,I don’t care that much,thing have changed dramatically, and it’s only going to get better,so sit back,relax enjoy,I’ll leave the scouting to kets

  • jezza442

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:31 PM

    Comment #36

    I just have to pray I’ll be able to get the odd ticket now and then when I’m not working,think I’ll have to be patient lol

  • captainmarvel

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:31 PM

    Comment #37

    Excellent posts Bob..

  • JP...from The Rock

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:33 PM

    Comment #38

    Sholashow – wow!! What a list of class players available. I would love it if we went for Dybala, Kessie, Ansu Fati and Belloti.

  • hibbit

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:33 PM

    Comment #39

    kc2012 my closest friend is an Arsenal season ticket holder and a friend of over 50 years
    and guess what he’s squealing like a stuffed pig and we haven’t even kicked a ball yet and i’m loving it,

  • geordietom

    Oct 9, 2021 at 4:36 PM

    Comment #40

    went shopping with the wife bumped in a a good mate of mine , he’s a massive Arsenal fan first thing he said to me was TOM well done about the takeover about time as well , he grew up in the keegan era wants us back playing that type of football again …


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