Newcastle are reportedly making firm progress in their bid to appoint Ramon Planes as their new sporting director – despite claims that two of European football’s big hitters are also eyeing the Spaniard.
The Magpies begun the bright new era of Eddie Howe with a hard-fought 3-3 draw against Brentford at St James’ Park. While their new coach was absent after a positive covid test, his influence was certainly felt. But with Newcastle rooted to the bottom of the table and winless in 12, plenty of hard work lies ahead.
Indeed, first on their agenda is to appoint a new sporting director to assist Howe in his transfer business.
Marc Overmars and Edwin van der Sar have both seen their names mentioned with the vacancy. However, reports earlier this month claimed that Planes was emerging as their top target.
Those hopes have now been given a significant shot in the arm amid following his departure at the Nou Camp.
As per Sport, Planes sought to leave following Xavi Hernandez’s appointment as boss. Furthermore, it’s reported that Planes is ‘studying offers’ from elsewhere.
Indeed, they state he has a ‘number of important offers on the table’ and is ‘studying the possibility’ of moving to Tyneside. Planes is reportedly ‘hungry’ to get back into the game as soon as possible and will soon give Newcastle an answer.
Planes a man in demand
However, as per the Spanish outlet, Newcastle aren’t the only ones keen on Planes. Indeed, they claim both Bayer Leverkusen and Roma are considering approaches to Planes.
And they insist the possibility of him heading to Roma is gaining weight in recent days.
Roma, do however, already have Tiago Pinto as their sporting director, so it remains to be seen how they will accommodate Planes.
In conclusion, Sport claim Planes will have a new team before the end of the year. Furthermore, they expect Newcastle to have their answer ‘very soon’.
Planes behind several huge Barcelona deals
The 54-year-old was first appointed as director of professional football under Eric Abidal in 2018.
The Spaniard took over as sporting director after the Frenchman left last summer. He is held in high regards in European football having previously been at Racing Santander, Alaves, UE Lleida and Espanyol.
He also spent time at Tottenham before returning to his homeland to continue his career. Planes has also overseen many major deals while at Barca.
He helped the club secure the signature of players such as Pedri, Antoine Griezmann, Sergio Aguero, Frenkie de Jong and Memphis Depay. Newcastle fans will hope he can have the same effect on Tyneside.