After The Chronicle recently reported that the club planned to hand Sean Longstaff a new contract, Rafa Benitez has now confirmed that he has been in touch with Lee Charnley in a bid to tie him down to a new deal.
The 20-year-old midfielder has had a breakthrough summer of sorts, impressing over pre-season and earning a place in Rafa’s Premier League squad, however his contract is due to expire at the end of the season.
It’s also been reported that European clubs can sign him for just £500,000 if he lets his contract run down – another reason why he need to get a new contract agreed after The Chronicle confirmed interest from Spain, France and Germany.
Here’s what the Spaniard has had to say when asked if he was in talks with the youngster about a new contract:
“One of the things we have been talking about is that.
“Lee Charnley wanted to know my vision on it. I spoke to the lad he is training well.
“I told him to leave the other people (agents and the club) to do their jobs and concentrate on doing well in the training sessions and he is quite focused.”
Longstaff got on the scoresheet once again for the U-23’s last night and he really does look like a player capable of making the step up to senior level.
Given Ayoze Perez’ stuttering form and our lack of alternatives in attacking midfield, Longstaff may well get his big chance before long – but securing him for the next few years will be the biggest breakthrough for now.