Rafa Benitez now looks set to keep Sean Longstaff at Newcastle United for the first half of the season according to The Chronicle – with the club ‘pulling the plug’ on his proposed loan move to Portsmouth after impressing the Spaniard in pre-season.
So, why can this be seen as both good news and bad news for NUFC?
The good news is that one of our top young prospects is making an impact at first-team level and impressing Rafa Benitez. The bad news is the message this sends out – with The Chronicle suggesting he may be kept as Rafa’s hopes of signing a new number 10 are now ‘dwindling’.
He may end up agreeing a loan move elsewhere if Isaac Hayden remains or a number 10 is signed before next Thursday’s deadline, but it seems like the club are now planning for him to stick around for at least the first half of the season:
Here’s what Lee Ryder’s had to say on the situation:
‘Newcastle United look set to hold on to young midfielder Sean Longstaff with Portsmouth ready to throw the towel in on a season long loan deal.
‘Sources on the south coast are now suggesting Kenny Jackett is on the brink of giving up on persuading Newcastle to part with the Academy product.
‘Pompey had an agreement in principle with the Magpies but the 20-year-old Geordie is now likely to remain with United for the first half of the season.
‘Longstaff has impressed with the first team squad and played in all three friendly games after Rafa Benitez decided to take a close look at him over the summer.
‘A deal for Longstaff was supposed to be pushed through on July 2, but after a good week at Carton House and a debut goal against St Partick’s – United opted to delay the loan move.
‘Since then Longstaff has continued to impress and with hopes dwindling that Benitez will get a new number 10 – not to mention Isaac Hayden’s uncertain position – the Magpies boss can’t afford to sanction the former North Shields Athletic youth player’s exit.’
With a goal on his debut and 90 minutes of action against St Patrick’s Athletic and substitute appearances against Hull and Porto since then, it’ll be interesting to see how he gets on against Braga tonight.
What do you make of this folks? Happy to see a youngster getting his big chance or a worrying sign as far as potential new signings are concerned?
It’s a bit of both as far as I’m concerned, but good luck to the lad – he’s a real talent!