Newcastle United reportedly blocked a January exit for Matt Ritchie.
The 31-year-old was linked with a return to Bournemouth in January and there was talk of a potential swap deal involving him and Cherries midfielder Philip Billing. However, The Athletic have now revealed why Ritchie’s move back to the south coast didn’t go through.
Were NUFC wrong to keep Ritchie in January?
Ritchie had his bags packed for Newcastle exit
The Athletic talked about Ritchie’s situation at St James’ Park, saying that the Scotsman was keen on joining Bournemouth and he had even emptied his locker ahead of a move. While he was convinced about a move to the Vitality Stadium, Newcastle ended up blocking the deal as they couldn’t find a potential replacement for the left-sided ace.
The report added that Newcastle wanted Ritchie to leave permanently or else loan him out with Bournemouth having the obligation to buy him permanently. However, the Cherries wanted him on a loan deal which would only become a permanent move upon promotion back to the top flight.
Newcastle stay hasn’t helped for Ritchie
Steve Bruce recently confirmed that he did have a bust-up with Ritchie recently and it has been stated that the player called his manager a ‘coward’ in the altercation. Bruce went on to criticise how the news about the bust-up got leaked in the media.
The 31-year-old has played only three times in the second half of the season and his last start for the Magpies came in early January. His last appearance was an 18-minute cameo against Wolves at the end of last month (Transfermarkt).
This suggests that staying at St James’ Park hasn’t helped Ritchie at all and it is easy to see why he wanted an exit in January.
In other news, Lee Ryder believes that Newcastle aren’t seeing the best of one Magpies star – read more here.
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