This article is part of Football League World’s ‘The Verdict’ series, which provides personal opinions from the FLW writers regarding the latest breaking news, teams, players, managers, potential signings and more…
West Bromwich Albion are among the clubs interested in a move for Matty Longstaff, according to Chronicle Live.
The 21-year-old is facing a pivotal few months as he moves into the final 12 months of his contract with Newcastle United, meaning that his long-term future at the club is in doubt.
Longstaff made just five appearances for Steve Bruce’s side last season which means that the central midfielder could be allowed to leave the club on loan in order to secure first team minutes.
With the Baggies preparing for a promotion push from the Championship Longstaff could be a viable option, but would he be a good signing for West Brom?
The team at FLW have their say…
This could work out really well for the Baggies.
Their midfield looks a little depleted at the moment, with only Romaine Saywers, Jake Livermore and Rekeem Harper to choose from.
The first two are proven Championship performers but Harper looks as if he could be on his way out, so adding more quality in that area would make a lot of sense.
There’s a lot to like about Longstaff and he’s been unlucky with the lack of opportunities he’s been given under Steve Bruce.
He’ll surely be hungry to prove himself out on loan and force his way into Newcastle’s plans.
Albion would be clever to ensure they’re the beneficiaries of that!
I do think that this could be a useful signing for West Brom if they are able to get it done.
Things haven’t gone as well for Longstaff recently, but if you look at the way that he first burst on to the scene at Newcastle, there is clearly potential and ability there that can be exploited.
As a result, you feel that the drop down to the Championship could be a decent one for Longstaff, since that may allow him to flourish more, particularly in a team who you would expect to be strong at that level in the form of the Baggies.
With Okay Yokuslu and Ainsley Maitland-Niles’ loan moves both now over, and Rekeem Harper linked with a move to Ipswich, it also seems as though West Brom could do to add to their central midfield options during the transfer window, something they would be doing with the addition of Longstaff.
Add to that the fact that with other clubs interested in Longstaff, this would be something of a boost for the Baggies to win this transfer battle, and it does seem as though this is one worth pursuing for those in charge at The Hawthorns.
Conor Gallagher and Okay Yokuslu are on their way back to Chelsea and Celta Vigo after the expiration of their loan deals, so getting in someone like Matty Longstaff would be a shrewd and needed addition at the Hawthorns.
You also have to look at players who are/were further down the pecking order. Rekeem Harper looks set for a move to the third tier and Sam Field has moved on, so the Newcastle United midfielder could be joined by a couple more central midfielders to compete with Jake Livermore and Romaine Sawyers.
This competition is a vitally important season with West Brom as one of the favourites to go back up, so this depth and the new managerial appointment combined will help to sharpen minds ahead of the new season.
In terms of Longstaff personally, it feels like we haven’t really seen the best of the 21-year-old yet so the fact he has a point to prove would do the Baggies no harm at all.
And if he’s only joining on a loan deal, it’s likely to be a cheap, low-risk signing. I just hope Ismael (or another appointment) will utilise him fully because this would be a wasted move for the midfielder if not.
But overall, this is a smart signing.