Mike Ashley unlikely to sign Bruce’s two top targets as damning new transfer claims arrive – Report

Jeff Hendrick may be closing in on a move to St James’ Park, but Craig Hope’s latest piece for the Daily Mail paints a worrying picture as we head towards the business end of summer transfer window.

He suggests Hendrick may be the archetype of transfer business Newcastle attempt to do this summer, claiming Steve Bruce may be forced to spend the summer shopping for bargains and loan deals, with Mike Ashley reluctant to sanction any big money deals.

As an example, it’s thought Bruce is finding it ‘difficult’ to pursue top targets Callum Wilson and Chris Smalling, with himself and the club’s hierarchy said to have different ideas about our willingness to spend over the coming six weeks.

Here’s a snippet from Hope’s piece for The Mail, which reveals some damning claims that have emerged from agents aware of our approach so far this summer:

“Newcastle are set to complete the free transfer signing of former Burnley midfielder Jeff Hendrick – and spending will be kept to a minimum at the club this summer.”

“Sportsmail has spoken to several agents who say the Magpies are primarily in the market for loan signings, preferably with a percentage contribution to salary rather than covering the full wage.”

The last line seems particularly damning, suggesting the club (Mike Ashley) really is trying to save every penny possible this summer – even on potential loan deals.

This indicates that Bruce is facing a serious battle to land the likes of Wilson and Smalling on lucrative permanent deals, suggesting our alleged budget of £30m is as limited as it sounds.

Hope touches on this below, believing it will put his ‘good relationship’ with Lee Charnley to the test:

“Steve Bruce could find it difficult when it comes to targeting the likes of Manchester United defender Chris Smalling and Bournemouth striker Callum Wilson.”

“Sources have indicated that the manager’s wish-list may not tally with what the club’s hierarchy have in mind.”

“Bruce has a good relationship with managing director Lee Charnley but that could be put to the test in the coming weeks as the extent of Newcastle’s ambition in the transfer market is determined.”

“They will not be alone in curtailing their investment in new players, but the collapse of the Saudi-led takeover and Mike Ashley’s determination to sell the club means there is little appetite for lavish expense, such as the £40million spent on Joelinton last summer. Some scouts even remain on furlough.”

Considering the signing of a goalscorer is absolutely essential this summer, this doesn’t exactly bode well – especially when they rarely come cheap!

It’s also worth noting that Wilson and Smalling are 28 and 30 respectively, so their age could be as much of an issue as their £20m price tags, with this being a regime that said no to a £16.5m deal for a 29-year-old Salomon Rondon 12 months ago.

It seems that Newcastle fans must expect another summer of austerity on Tyneside, but hopefully Bruce is handed some leeway or lands at least a few bargains to send us into the new season with a squad capable of competing.

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8 thoughts on “Mike Ashley unlikely to sign Bruce’s two top targets as damning new transfer claims arrive – Report

  1. And our Steve thought our leader was on his side
    Get ready Steven boy this is how it is at NUFC
    Do as I say or on your bike (SD one of course)

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  2. EVEN IF Ashley was to give Numpty Bruce money – 1) Smalling doesn’t want to come to NUFC – a day’s old story…

    Plus Wilson is wanted elsewhere – so this whole story on how Ashley doesn’t want to spend is a totally made up story!!

    What ALL NUFC fans really want to know is WHY the Feck is numpty Bruce wanting more and more Midfielder’s..

    …when we currently have already on the books quality and more than enough!!!!

    If I was the Director I wouldn’t trust Bruce – he’s a clown – we NEED a striker = Sell Gayle to a championship club and bring in 2 striker’s!!!

    Get shot of Atsu, Yedlin, Muto,

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  3. Can just see the FCB paying Smalling’s 100+K wages! Rinse and repeat, cheap loans, frees and aim for 17th. However with an aging mediocre squad and bruceless in charge relegation is definitely on the cards. So all those “buyers” out there wait until we are in a lower league. Just think Wolves were bought for under $50m!

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  4. Welcome to Ashley’s NUFC Bruce. You can wax lyrical as much as you like saying “we’ve got one or two irons in the fire right now – let’s hope we can pull them off” but you just sound like any previous coach under Ashley’s regime, hoping he will release funds while history dictates the opposite.

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  5. KK:

    If I was the Director I wouldn’t trust Bruce – he’s a clown –we NEED a striker = Sell Gayle to a championship club and bring in 2 striker’s!!!

    So you think Gayle is not good enough, but with the cash we would get if we sold him we could bring in 2 strikers?
    Not so sure about that.

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  6. I think you’ll find that nobody is spending big, with the possible exception of the top handful of clubs, with a number of teams thankful to still be solvent.

    Add to that the possibility of another takeover and Ashley won’t even be buying the coffees doon the canteen, never mind 30 million on a striker.

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  7. Gayles beat season for goals was in the championship, we need a reliable premier league striker.
    The whole transfer market has stopped due to the virus and businesses finances so it just plays into Ashley’s hands. A lot for other clubs will be doing the same so Craig Hope is malikg something out of the normal practices we will see in most clubs.
    Less midfielders and more strikers of better quality.

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