Roy Hodgson has confessed he does not want to sell any of his Crystal Palace players as reports claim Newcastle are targeting defender Joachim Andersen.
The Magpies are looking to build on a sensational 2022-2023 when they managed a fourth-placed finish. Entry into the Champions League has prompted a summer boosting of the Tynesiders squad. The likes of Sandro Tonali, Harvey Barnes and Tino Livramento have all been recruited during the off-season.
But the transfer window is still open. Rumours suggest the north-east outfit will add at least one more player to their squad.
And renowned transfer journalist Fabrizio Romano feels he knows where Eddie Howe will look to strengthen.
“For Newcastle, a centre-back is the next position they will try to add to,” the Italian wrote on CaughtOffside.
“There is no clarity yet over a final name, but they have a list with many players on it.”
Romano may well be right as reports indicate the St James’ Park outfit do want to shore up their defence.
Fabian Schar and Sven Botman are currently the first-choice centre-backs at Howe’s disposal.
But he needs another top-class centre-half to act as back-up and provide competition.
Andersen appears to be on the radar. It was reported earlier this week that Palace have priced him at around £40m.
And it has been suggested that Newcastle want to do business at a reduced price.
Whether or not they get their wish only time will tell. But the Eagles do not want to lose any of their top stars.
Hodgson has no desire to sell Andersen
Palace finished 11th last term, 11 points above the relegation zone.
However, they have added only two new faces to the ranks this summer, with Matheus Franca arriving from Flamengo.
Jefferson Lerma was signed on a free transfer after leaving Bournemouth.
But talismanic forward Wilfried Zaha has joined Galatasaray and there is a sense that the Eagles need new players.
That prompted Hodgson to issue a plea for clubs to leave his men alone before the transfer window closes.
“It would be a bitter blow now if we had to start the season with other of our top players being tempted away from us, or other clubs coming in and persuading Crystal Palace to sell them,” he said via the Evening Standard.
“There is no desire to sell any of those players, and we cannot avoid speculation that other clubs will be interested in players of that quality.”
It seems unlikely that the Palace hierarchy will lower their asking price for Anderson. The Denmark international, 27, still has three years left on his present deal.
The former Sampdoria star has enjoyed 72 outings in all competitions for Palace since arriving from Lyon two years ago.
He also made 31 appearances for Fulham during a season-long loan with the Cottagers in 2020-21. It remains to be seen if he does end up at Newcastle United.
But Palace will surely drive a hard bargain as they look to keep hold of their stars for another challenging Premier League campaign.