According the the Mirror, Newcastle will have the opportunity to sign long-term NUFC target Tom Cairney for £20m this summer – but only if Fulham miss out on promotion to the Premier League.
The report claims Newcastle, West Ham and Watford will all be in the running to sign the Fulham playmaker if he were to become available this summer, meaning Rafa Benitez may finally get the chance to sign the midfielder he took a liking to during our stint in the Championship over the 2016/17 season.
It’s said that he’ll be ‘free to quit’ Fulham for £20m if they fail to win promotion once again, however I have my doubts whether we’ll actually maintain our interest in the Scottish international at that point. He may have got in double figures for both goals and assists last season, but he’s got just 2 goals and 4 assists this season and has struggled with a knee injury (despite still making 25 appearances).
He’s a talented player, however he has little to no Premier League pedigree and isn’t all that far away from his 30’s. Is he really the sort of player that will convince Mike Ashley to break a transfer record that he’s refused to break in 10 years? I’m not so sure now.
It will be an interesting one to watch if Fulham fail to go up (as will Aleksandar Mitrovic’s situation), however I have my doubts as to whether we’ll still value him at £20m after a mixed season at Craven Cottage (not to forget he’s another year older).
A swap deal for Mitrovic perhaps? We shall see.