Newcastle United

Newcastle United

Premier League • England

Newcastle declare interest in AFCON midfielder but face tricky test in completing deal

Ibrahim Sangare PSV

Newcastle are keen to sign an Africa Cup of Nations midfielder but will face a tough test to get a deal over the line, according to the latest reports.

Magpies boss Eddie Howe has a fair few central midfielders to choose from, including Joe Willock, Jonjo Shelvey, Sean Longstaff and Jeff Hendrick. Matty Longstaff is also back from a loan spell, while forward Joelinton is doing well after being utilised further back.

However, Newcastle are without a true defensive midfielder amid Isaac Hayden’s time on the sidelines. The 26-year-old could miss several months after undergoing surgery on a knee problem.

The Magpies could use the January transfer window to rectify the problem. And they have set an exciting precedent following Kieran Trippier’s arrival from Atletico.

The Daily Mail reveal Newcastle’s interest in midfield enforcer Ibrahim Sangare. He has been a reliable performer for PSV since joining from Toulouse in September 2020.

Sangare is currently on international duty with the Ivory Coast. He is pushing to start in their AFCON opener against Equatorial Guinea on Wednesday.

Newcastle want to give Sangare his first crack at the Premier League once the tournament is over, but they may face difficulty in doing so.

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Inside Futbol, citing Dutch outlet Voetbal International, claim PSV are desperate to keep the 24-year-old around.

They are engaged in a close Eredivisie title battle with Ajax and Feyenoord. PSV are top on 43 points, but any slip up could see them drop down to third.

Eindhoven believe Sangare will be vital to their title push once he returns from the AFCON, and will therefore reject bids from Newcastle this month.

The Tyneside club’s wealth could aid their pursuit of a transfer, although it may take a huge offer to get anything over the line.

Newcastle fans hoping Kieran Trippier’s top-flight return is more Lineker than McManaman

Newcastle target signs new Barcelona contract

Meanwhile, Newcastle target Samuel Umtiti has penned a new Barcelona contract, keeping him in Catalonia until 2026.

Umtiti’s previous terms were due to expire in 2023, leading to rumours of a Premier League switch.

But he has now ended those links by pledging his future to Xavi’s team. The centre-back has also done Barcelona a favour by agreeing a wage cut.

This will allow them to register new signing Ferran Torres, who cost £46.3m when joining from Manchester City.

Umtiti has made 133 appearances for Barcelona in five-and-a-half years, scoring on two occasions.

READ MORE: New Man Utd offer imminent, but Newcastle ready to strike if deal falls through