Newcastle United face a hectic period of contract discussions, with nine players due to reach the end of their contract or loan deal at the end of the current campaign. Chief Sports Writer Scott Wilson assesses what is likely to happen as the contract clock ticks on


The Northern Echo:

Darlow is one of two goalkeepers due to become free agents at the end of the current campaign, and as Newcastle’s established deputy to Martin Dubravka, the 29-year-old will almost certainly be offered a new deal.

He hasn’t been a regular starter since the middle of the 2017-18 season, but as a popular member of the dressing room, is regarded as a reliable and capable number two. Given that he is approaching his 30s, he is likely to jump at the chance of a new deal on Tyneside.


The Northern Echo:

Unlike Darlow, it is hard to envisage Elliot being offered new terms. He will turn 34 next April, and has not made a senior appearance since December 2017, when he kept goal in a 1-0 home defeat to Manchester City.

With Freddie Woodman currently on loan at Swansea City, Newcastle are well-stocked in the goalkeeping department, and as a result, Elliot will have to move on. However, with a large amount of club and international experience behind him, he should be able to secure a move to the lower leagues.


The Northern Echo:

Willems signed a season-long loan when he joined Newcastle from Eintracht Frankfurt in the summer, with the Magpies insisting on the inclusion of a clause that enables them to complete a permanent deal for €11m once his loan expires.

All the indications are that Newcastle will trigger the clause in the second half of the season, with the 25-year-old having established himself as a key part of Steve Bruce’s preferred five-man backline, starting eight of United’s last nine league games.


The Northern Echo:

There have been times during Manquillo’s Newcastle career when he has been close to nailing down a regular starting spot, but the Spaniard currently finds himself on the fringe of things and is therefore likely to be regarded as expendable.

He has only made two Premier League starts this season, with the summer signings of Willems and Emil Krafth having shuffled him down the pecking order. He might be of interest to other clubs in England, but a more likely scenario is that he makes a summer return to his native Spain.


The Northern Echo:

A month or so ago, the chances of Fernandez being offered a new contract were slight. The 30-year-old was struggling to make Newcastle’s matchday squad and looked certain to be offloaded next summer.

Things have changed though, with Fernandez having impressed in the last three games after an injury to Fabian Schar resulted in his return to the starting side. With Jamaal Lascelles set to be sidelined until at least the new year, the Argentinian will remain an important player, and Bruce is keen to start contract discussions before the end of 2019.


The Northern Echo:

Rafael Benitez rated Ki reasonably highly, but Bruce does not appear to share his predecessor’s opinion of the South Korean, and as a result, he will be ushered through the exit door at the end of the current campaign.

Ki’s only league start this season came in August’s 3-1 defeat at Norwich, with Bruce concerned that the 30-year-old’s lack of pace and mobility makes him a liability in a central-midfield role amid the cut and thrust of the Premier League. It is hard to see other top-flight clubs queueing up to sign him, so a move to the Championship might be in the offing.


The Northern Echo:

Newcastle’s forgotten man, Colback is still training at the Magpies’ Darsley Park base despite his absence from the squad list that was submitted to the Premier League at the start of the season.

There is no chance of the midfielder being offered a new deal, and Newcastle will look to engineer a scenario that results in his departure in January. Nottingham Forest remain interested, having previously had Colback on loan, and the Magpies will be willing to discuss a financial settlement that paves the way for the 30-year-old to leave before his contract officially expires.


The Northern Echo:

While Sean Longstaff is contracted until the end of 2022, his younger brother, Matty, is due to become a free agent next summer, and resolving his situation will be a key priority for Lee Charnley and the rest of Newcastle’s executive team over the next few weeks.

As things stand, Matty would be free to speak to overseas suitors from January 1, and while the boyhood Newcastle fan has shown no indication that he wants to leave, the Magpies will not want to leave themselves in a vulnerable position. Expect further developments soon.


The Northern Echo:

Carroll signed a one-year deal when he returned to Tyneside in the summer, and at this stage, the 30-year-old is yet to show anything that would merit the award of an extension beyond the end of the current campaign.

That could change, with Bruce set to step up the striker’s involvement in the next few weeks, and the Newcastle hierarchy are willing to keep an open mind about Carroll’s long-term future, although they would almost certainly want to retain a ‘pay-as-you play’ element in any future deal. If they decide against offering the Tynesider a new deal, he will have to make some difficult decisions about his future.