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Opinion

‘Newcastle United star finds his valuation has dropped by £40m’

4 weeks ago
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Throughout the entirety of the summer 2019 transfer window, it was reported that Manchester United were trying to sign Sean Longstaff.

The Old Trafford club targeting young British players as they allegedly moved away from targeting big names, buying Daniel James from Swansea and Aaron Wan-Bissaka from Crystal Palace, with other signings also aimed at.

Sean Longstaff had only started eight Premier League matches but early summer saw reports of a claimed £25m bid to buy the Newcastle  midfielder, that figure said to have climbed to £50m towards the end of the transfer window, as Manchester United became more desperate.

I’m sorry but this transfer saga all seemed a little bizarre to me and one that suited both clubs, especially Newcastle United. The media reporting Man Utd wanting to spend £50m on another player with NUFC refusing to sell their brightest young prospect, even for £50m.

This just didn’t feel to me like the story was in touch with reality, yes transfer fees have soared but where on earth do you get a £50m valuation from?

Going back two and a half years and his eight Premier League starts in 2018/19, I thought Sean Longstaff had played very well in maybe three games, had a good game in another couple, then poor to average in the other three.

The onset of the January 2020 transfer window saw the transfer story brought back to life, Manchester United reported to be even more keen to pay the £50m, especially with Scott McTominay out injured.

By then (January 2020), Sean Longstaff had added another nine Premier League starts under Steve Bruce and to be honest, I didn’t think he’d played very well in any of them. Maybe three or four of them he had been decent but the rest of them not so good.

That didn’t mean that the midfielder wasn’t going to make it, or that Newcastle should have sold him, in fact quite the opposite.

However, it was surely laughable to suggest that anybody would pay £50m for Sean Longstaff, or indeed anything close to that.

Yet that became the accepted ‘truth’ in the media, the story constantly repeated. Repeatedly referred to in numerous transfer stories, especially due to the fact Manchester United were at the heart of this transfer saga.

It was just crazy, especially when it came to how did anybody honestly think that Mike Ashley would knock £50m back for Sean Longstaff, a player who cost him nothing, and who’d only started eight Premier League matches when allegedly Man Utd first offered that figure.

This isn’t having a go at Sean Longstaff, far from it, more the fact that journalist after journalist would repeat the story, surely knowing it was absolute nonsense and had never happened.

So, imagine my surprise when Newcastle United star finds his valuation has dropped by £40m…

Yes, today (Wednesday 18 August 2021) The Mail have reported that their information is that Newcastle United have named a price after a number of Premier League clubs, including Everton and Southampton enquired, that price being £10m. Amazingly not £50m.

I think in that first short spell under Rafa Benitez before injury struck, Sean Longstaff did show signs of potentially becoming a £20m+ player. Under Steve Bruce though he has definitely gone backwards.

He has had injury issues as well and could bounce back at another club, under a better manager, maybe Ralph Hassenhuttl or Rafa Benitez could be that man…

For me though, the amusing thing is that none of the journalists / media, not The Mail or anybody else who I have seen repeating their story today, are reminding anybody that in two separate transfer windows (summer 2019 and January 2020) they were reporting as ‘fact’ that Manchester United had offered £50m for Sean Longstaff AND that Mike Ashley had turned it down.

It makes you wonder just what you can believe…

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