Newcastle United to put Karl Darlow and Dwight Gayle up for sale to boost transfer budget
According to The Athletic, Newcastle United are willing to put Karl Darlow and Dwight Gayle up for sale if Steve Bruce needs to boost his summer transfer budget.
Bruce is set to operate with restricted funds in the off-season but hopes Newcastle’s jump from 17th to 12th in the final Premier League table will improve his war chest. It is claimed the rise up the standings could be worth in excess of £15million in additional prize money.
But some players may still have to leave St. James’ Park. Among them are Freddie Woodman, as the goalkeeper has a host of long-term admirers including Arsenal. Newcastle view the 24-year-old as their future number one but could listen to bids in the event of big offers.
Florian Lejeune also faces an uncertain future as he prepares to return to Tyneside after a season-long loan with Alaves. While reports have touted Ciaran Clark for the chop, too, as Bruce looks to sign Celtic defender Kristoff Ajer.
Darlow and Gayle may yet follow the defenders out of St. James’ Park, though. Bruce wants to sign at least one box-to-box midfielder of similar style to Arsenal loanee Joe Willock. He would also like a defensive midfielder, left-back and striker if funds can stretch far enough.
Newcastle are set to see their striker options cut in the summer with Andy Carroll’s contract expiring next month. United would also be receptive to offers for Gayle if Bruce needs the funds, despite offering the 31-year-old a three-year contract extension in March.
Among the centre-forward options mentioned are Chelsea’s Tammy Abraham and Blackburn Rovers’ Adam Armstrong. However, both are unlikely due to the fees their respective sides would demand. Instead, the Toon will likely wait until the end of the window to pick up a fringe player of a top-eight side on loan.
TBR’s view: Newcastle need to sell Gayle
With Bruce having desires to sign players in every area of the pitch but goalkeeper, Newcastle will have to sell some before they can address all of his desires.
Darlow, 30, showed he can offer a safe back-up option for much of the earlier stages of the season. But will he want to be number two next term after Bruce called him ‘terrific (Daily Mail) in December? He will surely want to play far more often than he would at St. James’.
Bruce may be able to convince Darlow to stay at Newcastle if Woodman leaves. Which would put Gayle’s future under the spotlight, and the best option for United would be to sell.
Despite Bruce viewing Gayle as an ‘invaluable’ penalty-box striker (Athletic), the 31-year-old only scored one goal in 18 Premier League games this season. That strike also came on his first appearance of the campaign in December.
Gayle would also only start four of his top-flight appearances despite Newcastle being engulfed in a relegation battle for much of the season. So, clearly, Bruce does not feel he can rely on him, even when without Callum Wilson.
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