Federico Fernandez has told Sky Sports’ Keith Downie that he’s yet to hold any talks with the club about a potential new contract.
With his current deal due to expire in a few months’ time, the Argentinian’s future should be one of the club’s top priorities now the transfer window has shut – however it seems we’re taking a typically negligent approach.
Shelvey and Ritchie may have ‘agreed’ extensions in principle, but with Matty Longstaff yet to agree a new deal and Manquillo and Darlow set to leave on a free as things stand, we’re running the risk of losing FOUR first-team squad members for next to nothing this summer.
Here’s what Sky’s north-east reporter Keith Downie has had to say after speaking with Fernandez this lunchtime:
We may have FIVE other capable centre-backs on our books in Lascelles, Schar, Lejeune, Clark and Dummett, but Fernandez has arguably been our most dependable option from a purely defensive perspective over the past 18 months.
Not only that, both Clark and Dummett have just suffered season-ending injuries, while Lejeune has not looked quite right since returning from his second ACL, so a reliable and experienced Fernandez is a player we’d be silly to lose – especially on a free.
It’s been reported that there’s a clause in his contract which gives us the option to extend his deal by another year, but you have to question why we haven’t done this already?
He may have turned 31 recently – meaning Mike Ashley may be tempted to move him on – but his displays this season suggests he’s only getting better with age.
Letting him leave would be stupid – especially when it would take at least £10m so replace him with a player of equal quality.