Talk are ‘intensifying’ that Everton will make a January move for Newcastle United midfielder Sean Longstaff, according to The Chronicle.
Longstaff is into the final 12 months of his deal and, as it stands, he’ll be departing Tyneside on a free transfer come the summer.
The Daily Mail reported Everton’s interest in August, but Newcastle demanded £10million.
Blues boss Rafael Benitez is more than familiar with the 23-year-old, having handed him his Premier League debut.
Longstaff earned rave reviews from former Newcastle players following his breakthrough, with Alan Shearer hailing him as ‘faultless’ and Jermaine Jenas dubbing him a ‘top player’ (via Chronicle Live).
Under Steve Bruce this season, he’s started four Premier League matches, averaging an impressive 3.2 tackles, three accurate long balls and 1.5 clearances per 90 (via WhoScored).
Talks over a new deal for Longstaff have apparently been ‘on-off’ for a couple of years now.
And it looks increasingly likely that Everton will revisit their interest at the mid-point of the season, when Newcastle’s negotiating position will be weaker, claim The Chronicle.
A cut-price deal for Longstaff, with his contract running down, would be shrewd business from Everton in January.
He’s still young and could be expected to develop significantly under the tutelage of Benitez, and his numbers so far this season – only Allan manages more tackles (3.3 vs 3.2) than him in the Toffees squad – suggest he could make an immediate impact.
He’d also improve the Toffees’ strength-in-depth in the middle of the park, allowing Rafa to rotate his options when the games come thick and fast through the winter fixture list.
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