Transfer insider Dean Jones has revealed that Newcastle United are in talks with two potential back-up targets to Bayer Leverkusen full-back Mitchell Bakker.
The club have found it difficult to add further players to their squad in this transfer window following the acquisitions of both Kieran Trippier and Chris Wood from Atletico Madrid and Burnley respectively.
What’s the latest with Newcastle?
They continue to meet with disappointment as they aim to bring in a third senior signing in this window.
Moves for centre-backs have been difficult to complete, with both Sevilla’s Diego Carlos and Lille’s Sven Botman seemingly set to remain with their current clubs.
The former is valued at over £37m by Sevilla, meaning that Newcastle’s £30m bid has been deemed insufficient by the Spanish club.
The Magpies also saw a bid rejected by Lille for Botman and it has led to them seemingly realigning their sights and aiming for new targets.
The Athletic’s David Ornstein has also reported that a move for Manchester United’s Jesse Lingard is unlikely to be successful.
Bakker has also been heavily linked with a potential move to St James’ Park, with talks reportedly held over a deal to secure his signature prior to next week’s deadline.
But it appears that there may be some concern over whether a deal can be struck, as Jones has now revealed that there have been negotiations held with two potential back-up targets to the former PSG man.
What has Jones said?
He told GiveMeSport: “A left-back will be one that they get done, they’re speaking to two others at the moment, I’m told.”
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Will Bakker end up at Newcastle?
It remains a possibility, even if Newcastle are getting their ducks in a row.
That, really, is just good sense, as the club cannot rely on being able to strike a deal with their preferred target, as evidenced by their doomed Botman chase.
Bakker is clearly a good player – he has won a hatful of trophies in his career, lifting Ligue 1 and twice winning the French Cup, and he has been impressive since joining Leverkusen, playing 16 times in all competitions this season at the age of 21.
But he has a lengthy contract that runs until 2025 and only joined the Bundesliga side in the summer when he swapped PSG for the German top-flight.
Newcastle checking out alternatives is just the sensible thing to do, especially with so little time remaining in this transfer window.
Although it may not seem it right now, Newcastle are simply being efficient in their planning.