Newcastle on Lewis O’Brien transfer trail with Huddersfield midfielder seen as cheaper alternative to £20m Joe Willock
NEWCASTLE are on the trail of highly-rated Huddersfield midfielder Lewis O’Brien and could make a move this summer.
With the pandemic hitting transfer budgets across all four divisions, managers are having to cut their cloth accordingly.
Huddersfield’s Lewis O’Brien could be a cut-price alternative to Joe Willock at Newcastle[/caption]
And Toon chief Steve Bruce sees O’Brien as a player who could strengthen his squad without costing a fortune.
Joe Willock is Bruce’s No1 target after his goalscoring heroics since arriving on loan from Arsenal but Newcastle could struggle to match the Gunners’ £20million valuation.
Gunners youngster Willock, 21, scored a last-minute equaliser against reigning champs Liverpool last week to add to his goals against West Ham and Spurs of late.
But O’Brien has emerged as a less expensive option.
Despite the Terriers’ struggles this year, the 22-year-old has impressed with several Premier League clubs having watched the youngster in recent months.
Huddersfield are embroiled in a relegation dogfight but even if they stay up, they will struggle to hang on to £4m rated O’Brien.
Bruce wants to freshen up his Magpies squad in the close-season and is looking to offload Florian Lejeune and Yoshinari Muto on a permanent basis.
The pair have been out on loan this season and it had been thought that Frenchman Lejeune could be back in the fold after proving his fitness at Spanish side Alaves.
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Joe Willock has become something of a super sub for Steve Bruce on Tyneside[/caption]
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But there’s a feeling inside St James’ Park that the 29-year-old has lost a yard of pace following two serious knee injuries which scuppered his Toon career.
Muto, signed by Rafa Benitez for £10m in 2018, failed to make an impact in England, scoring just one goal and he has failed to revive his career in a disappointing spell with Eibar.
The Geordies are now looking to sell the Japanese striker but are braced on taking a massive hit in the transfer market.
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