Date: 14th January 2021 at 7:15pm
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After Mike McGarth of The Daily Telegraph claimed Ciaran Clark was close to signing a new contract with Newcastle United, Luke Edwards shared some further insight into what such an agreement could mean. 

What’s the story?

Clark, who Steve Howey recently backed as being vitally important during our exclusive interview, is believed to have been in talks with the Magpies about extending his deal that runs out in the summer.

While that should come as good news given his importance so far (playing every minute of the nine league games since returning from injury) Edwards hints that Steve Bruce’s likely influence over the agreement suggests he retains the support of Mike Ashley.

Following a miserable run of form that (hopefully) crescendoed in a loss to Sheffield United Lee Ryder described as ‘disgraceful’, fan frustration is mounting.

However, with Ashley seemingly sanctioning a deal for a player over 30 who has little resale value, it would seemingly suggest Bruce has the backing of his bosses.

The Verdict

It probably sums up the mood somewhat at Newcastle at the moment when the wider context of a key player potentially signing a new contract amid reported transfer interest is rather bleak.

In isolation, keeping Clark seems a no-brainer. An important member of the first-team set-up and Newcastle’s most dominant presence in the air (winning 4.1 duels off the ground on average per game according to WhoScored) losing him would leave a gaping hole in their backline.

Still, it’s easy to see Edwards’ logic and all the signs do suggest Bruce is under no immediate threat at the moment.