Eddie Howe insists Newcastle United do not have unlimited funds to spend this summer and feels the Sandro Tonali deal proves patience is key.
The Saudi-backed takeover at St James’ Park has propelled the Tynesiders back into the sport’s top sphere. From years of austerity, they are now linked with all manner of players given the funds available. Many new faces have arrived over the past 18 months with Howe and his recruitment team widely praised for their additions.
It paid off with a fourth-place finish seeing Newcastle return to the Champions League.
Unsurprisingly, that has sent the media into overdrive, with new players seemingly linked every day. But there are only so many stars that Howe can recruit.
And the ex-Bournemouth chief made it clear that he is not expecting any new faces anytime soon even though the clock is ticking.
“Nothing is close, we are working on that & we need new additions, he told reporters.
“We don’t have a huge budget to work with. Our budget is strict, now we have to be creative.
“We’re prepared to be patient & get the right players. But we’re also aware we need to improve the squad.
“So there will come a time that we have to move things forward quicker.”
Howe spoke to the media after Newcastle came from 2-0 down to beat Gateshead Town 3-2 at Gateshead International Stadium.
Marcus Dinanga and Ste Wearne gave the hosts the half-time lead.
But goals from Elliot Anderson, Allan Saint-Maximin and Jay Turner-Cooke ensured the Magpies claimed local bragging rights.
After the contest, talk inevitably turned to the transfer market.
Howe plays cards close to his chest
Newcastle United are said to be extremely interested in signing Leicester City winger Harvey Barnes.
They have also been linked with Manchester City’s underused midfielder Kalvin Phillips.
Howe admits that he does need a further boost to his squad before the window shuts.
But he stressed just how difficult it is to get the right players in and urged all connected with the club to remain calm.
“I’m very aware we do need more. The squad needs to be robust enough to deal with the challenges that we face this season,” he added, per the Shields Gazette.
“We’re not currently close (to further signings). We are in the process of talking & negotiating.
“But Sandro’s transfer demonstrates how long it can take to get over the line.”
Juventus winger Federico Chiesa is another player thought to be on the Magpies radar.
The Italy international may be surplus to requirements in Turin and there are plenty of clubs willing to snap him up.
Both Liverpool and Chelsea are known admirers while Newcastle are also in the race.
Both Barnes and Chiesa would be welcome additions to the St James’ Park ranks.
But it appears as though nobody should be holding their breath about either of the duo signing on the dotted line in the near future.