Steve McClaren has given Mike Ashley (via his minions) the name of the midfield playmaker he wants to bring in during the January window, with the player in question being Jonjo Shelvey.

Newcastle had been regularly linked with the 23 year old England international during Alan Pardew’s time at St James Park.

Summer 2013 saw Jonjo Shelvey move for £5m from Liverpool to Swansea, the very same transfer window when Newcastle failed to buy a single first team squad player, despite almost being relegated the season before.

The Mail say that their information is that Steve McClaren has made clear to the club that he desperately needs proven British Premier League players to dig Newcastle out of trouble, with Jonjo Shelvey top of the list.

In his time at the Liberty Stadium, Jonjo Shelvey has started 70 Premier League matches, scoring 10 goals and registering 13 assists in the league.

To put it into perspective, Vurnon Anita has managed one goal and two assists in the same two and a half years, whilst Cheick Tiote has no goals and three assists in that time period.

Jack Colback is at least better than his Newcastle teammates with seven goals and eight Premier League assists in two and  a half years (including Sunderland) but there is an obvious need for a massive improvement in creativity and goals from the middle of the pitch, not to mention protecting the back four.

Like Swansea overall, Jonjo Shelvey has not been at his best this season but has started to run into some form in recent games and has started all 13 of their Premier League matches so far.

Would Mike Ashley finally accept he has to pay what it takes to land proven Premier League players, whether it is Jonjo Shelvey or whoever?

If not, very hard to see Steve McClaren lasting much longer, especially after saying what a disgrace some of his current players are, in ‘angry exchanges’ this week at the training ground.

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