NEWCASTLE will move for Aston Villa defender Curtis Davies if Steven Taylor leaves St James’ Park this summer.

Taylor’s future remains in doubt following a difficult two months that saw him suffer a broken jaw in an alleged training-ground incident with Andy Carroll and fail to make the squad for the final game of the season at QPR.

The centre-half, who did not make a single appearance in the final four months of the campaign, has been the subject of interest from the likes of Everton and Fulham in the past.

And with Magpies owner Mike Ashley having committed himself to “no new capital outlay” earlier this week, Chris Hughton could opt to sell Taylor to raise funds for purchases of his own.

With Fabricio Coloccini, Mike Williamson and Tamas Kadar representing Newcastle’s only other senior centrehalves, Taylor’s departure would force Hughton to sign another defender.

The Magpies manager has been working on contingency plans for a number of weeks, and Davies is understood to figure prominently on his list of desirable centre-halves.

Hughton attempted to sign the 25-year-old on loan in January, only for talks to collapse, forcing him to turn his attention to Fitz Hall instead.

Davies has subsequently failed to force his way back into Villa’s first-team squad though, and Martin O’Neill has informed the former West Brom defender he is surplus to requirements.

O’Neill shelled out £8m to sign Davies in July 2008, but has accepted he will not be able to recoup his outlay given the defender’s tally of just 36 Premier League starts in two years.

Sources in the Midlands claim Villa would accept around £4m for Davies a figure Newcastle would be able to meet if they achieved their own asking price for Taylor.

Whatever happens this summer, Coloccini will be a key member of the Magpies’ back four next season, and the South American was celebrating yesterday after being named in Argentina’s provisional 30-man World Cup squad along with teammate Jonas Gutierrez.

The Newcastle duo were included in the provisional squad Diego Maradona submitted to FIFA in the early hours of yesterday morning.

Gutierrez’s inclusion was no surprise given his regular appearances during the qualifying campaign, but Coloccini’s presence, in preference to Barcelona defender Gabriel Milito, was a surprise.

The 28-year-old, who has been capped 33 times, will hope to impress in Argentina’s warm-up game against Canada on May 24 to force his way into the final 23 that will be named on June 1.