Five Newcastle stars who may be axed by Eddie Howe this year in St James’ Park clear-out
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Newcastle United are set for a busy 2022 of transfers as the power of their new ownership takes centre stage, with incomings and outgoings contributing to a squad overhaul led by manager Eddie Howe. Express Sport identifies five players likely to leave in the next two windows.
Ciaran Clark has been an important figure in the Newcastle defence since joining the club in the Championship in 2016.
However, one of the Magpies’ main criticisms this season has been their leaky backline, and Clark has regularly come under fire.
Howe is expected to prioritise his defence in early recruitment, with Kieran Trippier talks already advanced, and Clark could be one centre-half on which he upgrades.
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Federico Fernandez is a more likely centre-back departure this summer, and with good reason.
The 32-year-old Argentine has made just five Premier League starts all season and is one of Newcastle’s highest-earning players.
Howe’s top central-defensive target should be with the view of partnering Jamaal Lascelles, which leaves Clark, Fernandez, and Fabian Schar’s futures in the balance.
Amid a frustrating season of injury woes, Newcastle academy graduate Paul Dummett’s long tenure at the club could be coming to an end.
He’s arguably now third in the left-back pecking order behind Matt Ritchie and Jamal Lewis, and like Fernandez, his contract is up in the summer.
With Howe eyeing a right-back in Trippier and a centre-back, it will be interesting to see if he wants to entirely revamp his backline and sign a left-back of his own as well.
Jeff Hendrick only signed for Newcastle in 2020 but has made just one start in all competitions this season and is out of favour with Howe.
The Republic of Ireland international can’t get a sniff ahead of other central midfield options.
And despite his contract expiring in 2024, he could push for an exit as early as January, searching for more minutes.
Like Hendrick, Gayle also has just one start under his belt this season and unsurprisingly consistently cuts a frustrated figure on the Newcastle bench.
Callum Wilson, Allan Saint-Maximin and Joelinton are already above him in the pecking order, and that’s before Kylian Mbappe joins on a free this summer…
All jokes aside, now 31, Gayle won’t want to spend the twilight of his career watching from the sidelines.
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