Newcastle United and Southampton supporters have been full of joy in the Transfer Tavern this week after watching their sides secure crucial 1-0 victories over Crystal Palace and West Brom respectively in the Premier League on Saturday.
Rafa Benitez’s Magpies went into their clash with the Eagles having won three of their opening eight league matches, but soon made it four thanks to Mikel Merino’s fine header four minutes from time, propelling them up to seventh place in the table. And they are two points and three places clear of Mauricio Pellegrino’s Saints, who also needed a late winner from attacker Sofiane Boufal to edge past Tony Pulis’ West Brom 1-0 at St Mary’s in Saturday’s evening kick-off.
Thus, both sets of supporters have been making much noise in the Tavern this week, and they are also likely to be intrigued by a recent report from IBTimes UK, which suggests that both clubs are keeping tabs on former Leeds United winger Alfonso Pedraza.
The 21-year-old made the move to Elland Road earlier this year on loan from La Liga outfit Villarreal, but he struggled to have a meaningful impact at the Yorkshire giants with just one goal to show from his 14 appearances, of which only eight were starts.
And the Spaniard made another loan move at the beginning of this season to Alaves, and it is there where he seems to have attracted the interest of Newcastle and Southampton, both of whom clearly see the young winger as a player for the future at their respective clubs.
However, with a contract until 2021, it’s not going to be easy to lure him from parent club Villarreal, but the Premier League duo certainly have the financial backing to convince Pedraza of a return to England.
Landlord’s verdict: Alfonso Pedraza made the move to England earlier this year to link up with Garry Monk and Leeds United, although his loan spell wasn’t as fruitful as he and indeed the Whites would have hoped.
One goal in 14 appearances didn’t reflect the potential the 21-year-old has at his disposal, and the Villarreal youngster was again sent out on loan at the start of this season to fellow Spanish side Alaves, where he has reportedly attracted the attention of Newcastle United and Southampton.
Both clubs were likely be on the lookout for attacking reinforcements in January having managed just 18 goals between them in their 18 Premier League matches, and although Pedraza is clearly one for the future, he could also be one for the present as well.
But a new contract until 2021, agreed a matter of months ago, will make things tricky for the English duo – only time will tell whether either can lure him away from Spain in January.
Newcastle and Southampton fans… what do you make of the news? Let us know!