According to reports, there are now TWO clubs showing serious interest in signing defensive duo Emil Krafth and Javier Manquillo this month.
Starting with Krafth, who struggled in last night’s 3-0 defeat at Arsenal, it’s said the right-back is now being lined up for a January move to Turkish giants İstanbul Başakşehir.
This comes from Super Lig journalist İlhan Tüysüz (via from Asist Analiz), who claims that the struggling Swedish international could swap Tyneside for Turkey this month.
Sports Witness also suggest they could be looking to snap up our £5m flop this month after a serious injury to Júnior Caiçara has left former Man Utd man Rafael the only senior right-back in their squad.
Then to Manquillo.
Spanish outlet El Periódicio Mediterráneo claim right-back is also a ‘problem position’ for Villarreal following an injury to Mario Gaspar – and they report that former Arsenal boss Unai Emery has identified the forgotten Newcastle United defender as a player who would ‘fit perfectly’.
Manquillo has not long recovered from a bout of COVID, however that doesn’t really explain why our most reliable right-back has gone from first-team regular to not featuring whatsoever over our last TEN games since he helped us to that 0-2 win at Crustal Palace back in November.
I would be happy to cash in on Krafth – a player who’s failed to impress in any way, shape or form since he completed a baffling move from France 18 months ago – but selling Manquillo would seem all the more odd when he’s not long signed a new deal and is still our best right-back when fit.
Fake news from abroad or genuine interest in both?
Time will tell, but it would be a surprise to see one player suddenly leave just a few days on from being brought back into the side (albeit it unsuccessfully) and the other depart so soon after signing a new improved contract at the club.