Newcastle United manager Eddie Howe has admitted he would be on board with bringing in ‘marquee signings’ this summer, and 90min understands the club’s owners are planning to spend big in the transfer market.
Howe has guided Newcastle into the Champions League in his first full season in charge, and despite a quarter of a billion pounds being spent since his arrival at the club in late 2021, he has long insisted they still need to be careful with how they use their money.
90min revealed earlier this month that the club’s majority shareholders, Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund (PIF), were eager to spend lavishly. They are set to provide substantial funds and have their eyes on some major deals.
Newcastle are due to announce some major sponsorships this summer which, coupled with European qualification, will enable them to rub shoulders in the transfer market with almost anyone in world football.
Neymar is one of the players PIF have identified as a possible signing, as 90min recently reported, and not just because of his standing in the game but because Newcastle are in need of a left-sided attacker.
Howe has now admitted that he would sanction signings in the ilk of Neymar and other superstars.
Ahead of Newcastle’s final game with Chelsea on Sunday, Howe was asked if his summer wish-list would include ‘marquee’ transfers.
“Yes, there would be players we’d love to bring in that would be classified in that bracket, I’m sure,” he replied.
“For me, it’s more about the role they can fulfil in the team – whether that’s viewed positively or as a marquee signing, then great.
“I’m not in my mind thinking, ‘We have to have one of those players that ticks that box for the supporters’. As much as I’d love to do that, it’s about finding the right player in the right position who I think makes us better.”
Howe added: “Unfortunately players don’t come cheap, especially good players. Yes, we are going to have to spend a certain amount of money. How much that is, I don’t know.
“I still don’t know what my budget is at this moment in time, but there will have to be some expenditure. It will have to be controlled. It will have to be under FFP restrictions, which we have worked under and will continue to work under. They are definitely impacting us and what we will be able to do.”
Howe also insisted that despite enhancing his squad, he won’t be jettisoning his current stars who have taken them into the top-four.
“Dan [Ashworth, director of football] has made the point to me about trading being an important part of our future. That does not necessarily mean selling your best players, but trading with FFP rules can be a good thing for your finances,” he continued.
“The club will also be very keen to protect their assets and be ahead of the curve in terms of contract length and make sure we’re in a strong position, but also recognising players who have done well and rewarding them for their performances.”
90min understands that Newcastle are looking at bringing in up to six new players across various positions. A holding midfielder, right-sided centre-half, a left-back and two forwards are among the roles they are hoping to strengthen in.
James Maddison and Scott McTominay are just two names that are very high on Newcastle’s summer shortlist.