The north-east of England has seen some pretty dismal performances in recent times and both Newcastle United and Sunderland will look to players in the transfer window to change their fortunes.
Both sides escaped relegation from the Premier League last season. The Magpies had left it to the last game of the season to prevent demotion to the Championship which saw Hull City lose their Premier League status.
After Alan Pardew's departure to Crystal Palace, Newcastle stuttered through the season under John Carver resulting in a final day scare.
The lack of good results meant that Carver did not get to seal his place as the permanent boss as the Newcastle board chose to appoint ex Middlesbrough, FC Twente, Wolfsburg, Derby and England boss, Steve McClaren.
After a relatively poor run of games that saw Gus Poyet lose his job at the Stadium of Light, Dick Advocaat managed to pick up the pieces and secured The Black Cat's place in the Premier League for another season.
Immediately after the end of the 2014/15 season, Advocaat announced that he would stand down as the Sunderland manager, however, would soon retract his decision to stay on, music to the ears of a large majority of Sunderland fans.
There shall be busy summers ahead for both managers as it will be their first summer transfer windows at their respective clubs and a good opportunity to stamp their mark on the north-east.
The Daily Mail reports that both clubs will go head to head in the transfer window to secure the signature of Dutch playmaker, Georginio Wijnaldum.
The 24-year-old midfielder won the Eredivise's player of the year last season for his part in taking PSV Eindhoven to the league title, playing alongside new Manchester United man, Memphis Depay.
McClaren's time in Holland may give him an insight into the way Wijnaldum plays his football, however, the midfielder has experience working with Advocaat which may sway him towards a move to the Stadium of Light.
The two north-east clubs may not only have each other to compete with for the signature of Wijnaldum as it is reported that West Ham, Swansea and Southampton have also expressed their interest.
The player has also expressed his interest to play in the Premier League, however, it will take an offer of around £15 million to lure the Holland international away from PSV. The question will be if both Newcastle and Sunderland are willing to part with that amount of money.
In today's game, £15 million for a goal scoring attacking playmaker with 19 international caps for Holland and 14 goals in the league for PSV last season, it may be a risk that pays off for whoever secures his signature as he may have the ability to help change things around at St James' or the Stadium of Light.
Taking the Dutchman's statistics into account, it may also be a deal worth completing soon as it wouldn't surprise if one of England's top clubs, participating in next year's Champion's League, comes in with an offer in the near future.
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