A couple of very popular Magpies gave interviews recently in which they were asked which players they would like to see join Newcastle. Bruno Guimaraes named former Lyon teammate and fellow Brazilian Lucas Paqueta while Allan Saint-Maximin said Nantes attacker Ludovic Blas.
Guimaraes’s friendship with Paqueta, who has been on Newcastle’s radar since January, is well chronicled. Saint-Maximin has revealed that he has a strong friendship with his compatriot Blas, who was also linked in the last window.
This is what Allan told Goal.com when asked who he would sign for Newcastle:
“The coach has a well-defined idea of what he needs for his team. If I had to choose, it would be the heart that would speak. I would most certainly want my friends to join the club.
“I’m thinking for example of Ludovic Blas. I really like the person and what he also does at Nantes. He’s scored a lot of goals. He’s an essential element at Nantes… I know that Bruno is very fond of Paqueta.”
Allan even mentioned Bruno’s friendship with Paqueta in his response. Both Blas and Paqueta are very skillful attacking midfielders with Paqueta likely the more appealing target for Newcastle.
Paqueta is a full Brazilian international with 31 caps and still just 24 years old. Blas, also 24, is a former French U20 international with an impressive 32 goals for Nantes in just over 100 appearances.
In the wake of Bruno’s and Allan’s suggestions, Newcastle World asked Howe about whether he would take suggestions from his players on future signings. This was his response:
“I have signed players from many different sources over the years.
“I’ve never cut off any recommendation from anybody. But of course, I’d have to go through the right process of watching and analyzing the player to see if he’s right for the team.
“I’m aware of Bruno’s relationship, not just with him (Lucas Paqueta) but many of his ex-players.
“Certainly, it helps to have players play at the very highest level because those relationships and opinions can be very valuable.”