Newcastle United supporters have been pretty despondent in the Transfer Tavern in recent days after seeing their side lose 1-0 at home to Bournemouth on Saturday to suffer a second successive Premier League defeat.
Rafa Benitez’s men went into their clash with the South Coast outfit off the back of a 1-0 defeat to Burnley last Monday, but would have viewed a home game against Eddie Howe’s struggling side as an opportunity to get back to winning ways. However, they were unable to do so as a late Steve Cook header was enough to secure a 1-0 victory for the Cherries, in turn moving them out of the Premier League’s bottom three, and pushing the Magpies into the bottom half of the division.
Thus, there have been some very unhappy Newcastle fans in the Tavern so far this week, although they may be encouraged by a recent report from HITC, which details some interesting information regarding reported summer target Lewis Holtby.
And that’s because they say that the Germany international missed Hamburg’s most recent Bundesliga clash against Stuttgart at the weekend, and alongside just one appearance in their preceding three matches, the 27-year-old’s future at the club has been plunged into doubt.
The midfielder is no stranger to English football either having spent time at both Tottenham and Fulham, scoring three goals in just 42 games for the former before managing just 13 appearances for the Cottagers in 2014 to underline his struggles in the Premier League.
However, Holtby has shown glimpses of his undoubted talent during his spell at Hamburg but his contract is set to expire at the end of the current campaign, and reports suggest that he was not named in their matchday squad against Stuttgart on Saturday to underline his lowly position in the pecking order.
And this may come as a huge boost to Benitez and Newcastle, who were linked with a move for the 27-year-old over the summer, as they know that they could talk to the German star in January if no new Hamburg deal has been signed.
But it remains to be seen whether they do indeed resurrect their interest in the midfielder.
Landlord’s verdict: Much was made of Newcastle United’s struggles to land key transfer targets during the summer, and their recent back-to-back Premier League defeats does suggest that they could be short in numbers ahead of the rest of the campaign.
And one man they were reportedly linked but didn’t do a deal for was Hamburg’s Lewis Holtby, who is well-known to English football fans for flopping at Tottenham and Fulham between 2013 and 2015.
Yet the 27-year-old has done reasonably well in the Bundesliga but has yet to agree an extension to his current contract, which is due to expire in January, and having failed to start any of their last five league games, he doesn’t appear to have a bright future at Hamburg.
Thus, that is surely going to be of interest to Rafa Benitez and Newcastle, who may well look to bolster their flagging attacking options with a move for Holtby in January.
Newcastle fans… what do you make of the news? Let us know!