Newcastle United have been working through their list of transfer targets with up to 44 names discussed at a recent recruitment meeting, according to a report in the print edition of The Sunday Sun (page 61).
The report suggests that club scouts recently met in order to wade through the club’s options and forty-four names were mentioned in regards to potential activity.
Clearly, the club won’t sign anything like close to that number, but there are understood to have been conversations behind the scenes as Newcastle look to build on what was a strong end to an otherwise miserable campaign.
Is this a good thing?
While it’s promising to see some work being done and good to hear that the club do have options in case moves for top targets don’t work out, the sheer number of names is slightly concerning. Indeed, the transfer window is now open and teams are buying players, yet Newcastle seem to be working on a massive short-list, which doesn’t exactly speak to any kind of coherent plan.
After all, Celtic’s Kristoffer Ajer was a major target earlier this summer but it now seems like both Norwich City and Bayer Leverkusen have overtaken Newcastle in that race, while there has been little development on the pursuit of Joe Willock ever since he returned to Arsenal at the end of the season.
If neither of those can be signed, why the hold-up in moving for other targets? If the list is that big, surely there’s someone else they can pursue without needing to discuss so many other names?
Of course, it’s hard to definitively say what went on behind closed doors, it’s just that time is already ticking away in the transfer market and nothing much has happened, leading to valid questions about how useful a 44-man shortlist actually is.