Steve Bruce has confirmed that Joe Willock will sign a SIX-year deal at St James’ Park, revealing that the club pushed to sign him on a permanent deal after an initial loan bid was rejected by Arsenal.
The NUFC boss has also confirmed that he’s currently undergoing his medical on Tyneside and could train with the group today, with the club scrambling to have him registered by 12pm so he can feature on Sunday.
Bruce admits it’s been a painful few months, with him and being forced to play a long waiting game, however he’s finally got his man and will be hoping he can play some part against West Ham this weekend.
Here’s what he’s had to say when speaking to Sky Sports’ Keith Downie, followed by a full transcript from the Joe Willock section of this morning’s press conference:
“He’s having a medical as we speak so hopefully he comes through ok and he’ll be involved with us this afternoon.
“There’s still a few bits and pieces to be done… but, so far, everything’s gone to plan. We expect him to train this morning.
“We’ve had to be patient. We knew Arsenal would have a look at him in pre-season.
“We explored the loan situation to begin with but have signed him permanently.
“My bosses always said if Joe became available, we’d sign him.
“We tried to get him on loan but Arsenal said no.
“The club have gone above and beyond where I thought they would.
“Credit to Lee Charnley for getting the deal done.
“Where else can you find a 21-year-old midfielder who’s scored 7 on the trot.
“There was times I didn’t think it was going to happen.
“And they key to it of course is Joe wanting to come back.
“We hope to have him registered for West Ham but if not we’ve got him for the next six years.
“I’ve had to be patient and I’ve not enjoyed it. But it’s been worth the wait.“