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Newcastle: Journalist urges PIF to address a lack of midfield options this summer

Newcastle: Journalist urges PIF to address a lack of midfield options this summer - Newcastle United News

Journalist Damian Spellman believes Newcastle United have to improve their midfield department this summer.

The Lowdown: A lack of depth may be concerning

The Magpies appear to be in something of a slump as they’ve drawn five out of their last six games in the Premier League.

Meanwhile, their sole win in that run came against Fulham, largely thanks to Aleksandar Mitrovic double-kicking his penalty before Alexander Isak headed in an added-time winner.

This run of form has also come at a worrying time for Eddie Howe, as his squad is being stretched, with Bruno Guimaraes out for another game, Jonjo Shelvey having left for Nottingham Forest and Joe Willock going off against Bournemouth with a hamstring injury.

It was reported in January that Newcastle’s main priority during the transfer window was to improve the centre of midfield, but despite losing Shelvey, that didn’t end up happening, which has left the Magpies short in the middle of the pitch.

The Latest: Newcastle will look to improve in the summer

Newcastle will have aspirations of playing European football next season and that would require a deeper squad – something Spellman expects them to address this summer as he spoke on the Everything is Black and White podcast.

He said: “There’s no secret that Eddie Howe didn’t want to let Jonjo Shelvey leave, and I suspect when he did okay it, he thought they might get somebody in – and ultimately they didn’t.

“I think it’s glaringly obvious that that is one of the departments in which they need to strengthen and I think it will be somewhere they’ll invest in the summer – and we all know they’ve looked at people for that position or that area of the pitch.”

The Verdict: PIF to go big next transfer window

While not spending heavily in January will likely put Newcastle in a healthier spot to spend more freely in the summer, if it ends up costing them either the top four or a chance to lift the Carabao Cup, that decision will likely be criticised.

Howe made it very clear during January that Newcastle didn’t want to spend money for the sake of it as they hoped to avoid handcuffing themselves financially for future windows, so it’s a very sensible approach taken by the club’s owners.

However, if Newcastle don’t make the top four, the calibre of players they could attract could drop significantly, so it’s a risky strategy and one that may well come back to bite them if they keep picking up injuries and fail to capitalise on a bizarre season where several of the usual suspects have been left behind in the Champions League race.

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