Norwich catch Newcastle on their heels in pursuit of ‘big money’ Old Firm star

Date published: Friday 4th June 2021 3:42 - Steve Pearson

Kristoffer Ajer tussling with Alfredo Morelos, Celtic v Rangers, April 2021

Newcastle are at risk of missing out after Norwich put their foot on the accelerator in the pursuit of a Celtic star destined for England.

Newcastle finished with a flourish to secure a commendable 12th placed finish after a topsy-turvy season. The Magpies were hovering just about the drop zone for much of the campaign after Christmas, but bagged five wins from their last eight matches to ease their nerves.

Norwich on the other hand, enjoyed a serene journey back to the top flight for the second time under Daniel Farke.

The Canaries topped the table in November, and remained there until the final day to secure promotion.

Both sides will enter next season with one thought in the back of their minds on avoiding relegation. As such, overseeing a successful transfer window will be key to their campaign hopes.

One player both sides have been linked with is Celtic defender Kristoffer Ajer.

Standing at at 6ft 6in tall, the imposing Norwegian has developed into one of the SPL’s most dominant defenders.

Newcastle’s interest has been longstanding, though the latest report from the Sun reveals they may have been caught napping.

The newspaper state that Celtic are ‘braced for a big-money Norwich bid’ for the centre-back.

Ajer has just 12 months remaining on his current deal. Though given his talent, he is still likely to command an eight-figure fee deemed ‘big money’ by the Sun.

Newcastle remain keen, but the Canaries have stolen a march and are poised to launch an official bid.

Norwich may soon be flush with cash after news recently broke of Arsenal’s initial £30m bid for playmaker Emiliano Buendia.

Recent Tottenham release ideal for Newcastle

Danny Rose Tottenham applause TEAMtalk

Meanwhile, Former Scotland manager Alex McLeish feels defender Danny Rose would be welcome back at Newcastle and could return to St James’ Park this summer.

Rose, 30, has left north London after 14 years as Tottenham released him at the end of his contract. Having spent a loan spell at St. James’ Park during the 2019/20 campaign, McLeish believes Rose could be a perfect fit on Tyneside as long as his head is in the right place.

“Rose is a great player. In fact, Newcastle fans actually would love Danny Rose to go back,” he told Football Insider. “With Danny, it’s like does he love football?

“He spoke about: ‘I’ll just walk away and retire then,’ last year when he was maybe in the huff a wee bit. But what a good player Newcastle would get on a free transfer. Incredible.”

Rose’s most recent season was far from ideal, with the left-back reflecting on a difficult campaign banished to the Under-23s here.

READ MORE: Paper Talk: Man Utd to meet £80m asking price for top Solskjaer target

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