North-East transfer gossip (Newcastle, Sunderland and Middlesbrough): Thursday, July 24

North-East transfer gossip (Newcastle, Sunderland and Middlesbrough): Thursday, July 24

North-East transfer gossip (Newcastle, Sunderland and Middlesbrough): Thursday, July 24

First published in Sport
Last updated
The Northern Echo: Photograph of the Author by , Chief Football/Golf Writer

NEWCASTLE

There is a new name in the frame to become Alan Pardew’s next signing. A new day, a different player; this time the England youth international Eric Dier.

Unusually this is an England international with a difference, given that he is only 20 and is involved in Sporting Lisbon’s first team. The versatile defender ticks all of the boxes in terms of the Magpies’ recruitment policy, but that does not guarantee a move for him.

Having said that Newcastle are sure to be monitoring him. If there is a promising talent of any nationality on the continent then chief scout Graham Carr should be aware of him. Whether or not a deal can be done for him is a different proposition entirely.

Dier can play right-back, or even up front, which would help provide back up to Daryl Janmaat following the departure of Mathieu Debuchy. It’s hard to imagine that he will come for a huge fee, but he is an option for Pardew.

Transfer likelihood rating: 5/10

SUNDERLAND

The need for Gustavo Poyet to strengthen will become even bigger in the next 24 hours when Ignacio Scocco completes his move back to Argentina.

Just seven months after arriving from Brazilian club Internacional, Scocco has already had enough of playing in the North-East and Wearside has already had enough of him.

Dubbed ‘a player needing time to settle’ by Poyet towards the end of last season, Scocco has not been given any further time to prove himself as a Premier League footballer.

Instead he is returning to South America to play for Newells Old Boys, in a deal that will eventually be worth £2.1m in installments. It means Sunderland take a hit of around £900,000 for a very unconvincing spell at the Stadium of Light. He has not figured during pre-season and, despite interest from River Plate, Old Boys have won the race for his signature.

Transfer likelihood rating: 5/10

Following Sunderland’s failure to strike a quick deal for Fabio Borini, they are understandably considering options and Joel Campbell has emerged as a firm candidate.

Despite Arsenal’s unwillingness to allow him to head back to Greece to play for Olympiacos, the Gunners are said to be open to the idea of further loan offers for Campbell.

The Costa Rican World Cup forward can play anywhere across the front line and would provide a similar threat to that offered by Borini. There is strong competition for Campbell, though, so a move to Sunderland is far from certain.

Transfer likelihood rating: 5/10

MIDDLESBROUGH

Things appear to have slowed up at Middlesbrough on the transfer front after an eventful few weeks which had looked like seeing a number of deals done before this Saturday’s trip to Rochdale.

Despite bringing in Kike, the Spaniard is the only new face in the squad from the group of players who finished last season. That is why Aitor Karanka hopes that chairman Steve Gibson can broker a deal or two, sooner rather than later.

Kenneth Omeruo is on the verge of returning for a further spell and will provide the extra strength and versatility required at the back. There is, however, still no breakthrough on the midfield front.

Adam Clayton remains the ideal choice from the Boro recruitment team but there is an unwillingness to match Huddersfield’s increasing valuation, which had been around the £1.5m mark at the start of the summer.

Middlesbrough are ready to walk away from that particularly deal, which is why alternatives are being worked on. Clayton remains the one Middlesbrough would prefer if the Terriers will change their approach.

Transfer likelihood rating: 6/10

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