Newcastle eyeing January signings
The Magpies’ squad looks decimated at the moment, with a string of injury problems arguably holding them back in both the league and the Champions League. A new fitness issue seems to emerge in almost every game currently, and last Saturday’s 2-0 defeat away to Bournemouth was a tired-looking performance that highlighted the need for new signings to arrive in the January transfer window.
Newcastle have been strongly linked with a move for Manchester City midfielder Kalvin Phillips, seeing him as arguably a standout option to come in for the suspended Sandro Tonali for the rest of the campaign, while other players are also seen as targets, including Manchester United’s Scott McTominay. It is understandable why midfield additions have taken precedence, but the Magpies could also target players in other areas of the pitch, and a fresh claim suggests that they could be eyeing defensive reinforcements.
Newcastle want Jarrad Branthwaite
According to a new update from Football Transfers, Newcastle are keen on signing Everton centre-back Jarrad Branthwaite in January.
“Newcastle United have targeted Everton defender Jarrad Branthwaite as the man to strengthen the heart of their defence, FootballTransfers can exclusively reveal. Manager Eddie Howe is a particularly big fan of the centre-back, who spent last season on loan at PSV in the Eredivisie.
“Since returning to Everton, 21-year-old Branthwaite has quickly won his place in the starting XI and has been one of the standout defenders in the Premier League this season. Now Newcastle and Howe have earmarked him to become the long-term successor to Fabian Schar, who is now 31.”
Branthwaite could be a fantastic signing by Newcastle if they manage to snap him up midway through the season, with the Englishman enjoying an excellent season for Everton to date. The 21-year-old returned to Goodison Park in the summer, following a loan spell at PSV Eindhoven, and he has hit the ground running. Branthwaite has made 10 starts in the Premier League this season, averaging 5.1 clearances and 2.7 aerial duel wins per game in the competition, and the Blues will clearly be desperate to keep hold of him.
The lure of playing for a team once again challenging for Champions League football could be too much for the centre-back to ignore, however, and he may think that he can oust Fabian Schar from the off at St James’ Park, becoming Sven Botman’s strongest defensive partner for the foreseeable future.
Someone who is clearly impressed with Branthwaite is Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp, who recently described him as a “really good left-footed centre-half”, which is high praise from a big figure in the game. At just 21, Branthwaite is already a regular for a Premier League team, playing a key role in Everton’s improvement this season in the process, and he is someone who could mature into a future England international, highlighting why Newcastle would be wise to make a move for him when January arrives.