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Steve Bruce now backtracks on Newcastle United January transfer window business

7 months ago
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It is January transfer window time and 10 days in, zero action from Newcastle United.

A lot of speculation and indeed earlier today Steve Bruce declared: ‘I think I have been linked with 38 players already…’

The thing is, Steve Bruce himself has helped fuel that speculation and indeed expectation.

Seven days ago ahead of the Rochdale match, Steve Bruce confirmed (see below) Newcastle had made approaches for players and said ‘They are really really good top, top players who I have gone for.’

A week later and the NUFC Head Coach appears to be rapidly backtracking on the expectations of Newcastle making signings, on this 10th day of the January Transfer Window, Steve Bruce now says about the likelihood of signings this month: “I have said from day one that January is always going to be difficult…and I haven’t changed on that.’ Bruce adding that any potential deal for Ademola Lookman ‘is a bit far off at the moment’…

The trouble is, if Mike Ashley is yet again insisting on only loan deals, then that seriously reduces the chances of credible signings.

Steve Bruce has made clear a centre-forward/striker/goalscorer is the main target and it has been heavily reported that Newcastle tried to do loan deals for strikers Olivier Giroud and Krzysztof Piatek.

The reality is that neither of these players were likely to be available on loan, a commitment to spend money on them was needed.

Olivier Giroud is now said to be joining Inter Milan after they agreed a transfer fee with Chelsea.

Whilst Tottenham and AC Milan are in talks about Krzysztof Piatek heading to Spurs, with a £30m transfer fee reported to be the valuation.

It is common sense that clubs are very very unlikely to allow any credible/decent player to go out on loan, without them getting the cash to be able to use on signings of their own. At the very least, you would be expected to pay a considerable loan fee and/or signing a binding commitment clause to buy the player in the summer.

So if that kind of signing is blocked by Mike Ashley then you are simply thrown into the melting pot with every other club of waiting to see which loan players you might be able to pick up who other clubs are happy to get rid of and/or players who will simply wait to the very end of the window, because why would they commit to you now rather than waiting to see who else comes along, if you aren’t keen enough to sign them permanently, or at least with a contract clause that could/would make it permanent later?

Steve Bruce admits interest in Ademola Lookman but even with him you are talking only of a player who has potential, the winger turns 23 this year and has only started 15 league games in the top tier of any country.

Rafa Benitez pulled rabbits out of the hat in Rondon and Dubravka and to an extent Kenedy but these are the exceptions that prove the rule, amongst Newcastle’s many other loan signings we have Slimani, Barreca, Kenedy (second time), Luuk de Jong, Doumbia, Ferreyra, Ireland and Gonzalez.

Steve Bruce speaking ahead of Wolves game about January transfer window – Friday 10 January 2020:

“I have said from day one that January is always going to be difficult…and I haven’t changed on that.

“We have to have people who are going to come in and improve us and that is difficult to find at this particular moment.

“If there is something available and we can act and there is a deal to be done, then we will try to do it.

“Simple as that.

“I think I have been linked with 38 players already and he (Ademola Lookman) is another one of them, he is a good player and I like him, but who wouldn’t do?

“It (a deal for Ademola Lookman) is a bit far off at the moment.”

Steve Bruce speaking ahead of Rochdale game about January transfer window – Friday 3 January 2020, asked whether Newcastle will sign players in January:

“I hope so.

“They are really really good top, top players who I have gone for.

“When that happens, you have got competition…but we will try.

“We have a couple of plates spinning who would be of interest.

“But in my experience, the end of the window may be when things happen…”

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