Newcastle United boss Steve Bruce has confirmed the club have received ‘one or two’ enquiries regarding a possible loan deal for midfielder Matty Longstaff, amid interest from a quintet of Championship teams this summer.
As per the Northern Echo, Slavisa Jokanovic’s Sheffield United and East Midlands outfit Nottingham Forest were the two leaders in the race for the 21-year-old after making ‘concrete offers’ for his services.
However, it has been said Huddersfield Town and Blackburn Rovers are also keeping tabs on his situation at St James Park, with West Bromwich Albion previously expressing their interest back in June.
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After making his breakthrough during the 2019/20 campaign, Longstaff only managed to make five Premier League appearances for the Magpies last season and manager Bruce has given him the green light to go out on loan and get a vast number of senior under his belt.
Although Norwich City were reported to be monitoring the midfielder’s situation along with recently-relegated side West Brom a couple of months ago, his most likely destination at this stage looks to be the Championship.
A loan deal with an interested side will need to be wrapped up in the next week if they want to secure Longstaff a move before the deadline – but there’s no shortage of interest in his signature and Steve Bruce is hoping his future will be made clearer in the coming days.
Speaking to the Daily Mail, the 60-year-old said: “It’s something that we have decided might be best for Matty (a loan). I have had that conversation with him.
“We have had one or two enquiries and hope something happens in the next couple of days.”
Although Nottingham Forest were previously thought to be one of the frontrunners for this potential deal, the arrival of James Garner has probably changed the picture with the Manchester United loanee, Cafu, Ryan Yates and Jack Colback available as options to Chris Hughton.
However, the others are still a possibility, with Huddersfield Town losing Juninho Bacuna and could also see Lewis O’Brien depart before the end of the window. This would make the addition of Longstaff essential, although a deal is yet to be struck for the 22-year-old despite considerable interest from Leeds United.
Another Yorkshire-based side in Sheffield United are currently on the lookout for one or two men to operate in the middle of the park after seeing John Lundstram leave the club in the summer, although Sander Berge is likely to remain at Bramall Lane as things stand. They would ideally want Longstaff though to challenge and provide adequate depth.
Blackburn Rovers could bring in Longstaff as another exciting option alongside Liverpool loanee Leighton Clarkson, but it’s West Bromwich Albion the likes of Sheffield United and Huddersfield Town need to look out for in this race.
After seeing Romaine Sawyers leave The Hawthorns for Stoke City, they may want the Newcastle United midfielder to come in to challenge the likes of Alex Mowatt, Jake Livermore and Quevin Castro.
But whether the Magpies would sanction a West Brom deal remains to be seen with no guarantee of many first-team minutes on offer.