Newcastle United have begun talks with their defender Jamaal Lascelles for a new improved deal, according to the Chronicle.
The newspaper claim that the Magpies have opened discussions with the 23-year-old about extending his existing deal, which is currrently set to expire in 2020.
It is understood that Rafael Benitez has been impressed with his captain during the past 12 months and the club want him to lead them forward to the next level.
Lascelles is a powerhouse defender that has become a popular player at St James’ Park and helped Newcastle record a 1-0 win over Swansea on Sunday.
The Englishman scored the winning goal for his side and also made a goal-line clearance from Tammy Abraham.
The report details that Lascelles is currently on the radar for England and that national team manager Gareth Southgate watched him in a recent win over West Ham.
Good move for Newcastle?
Lascelles has become an important player for Newcastle this season despite concerns in the summer over whether he would feature in the best starting XI.
The club captain has shown he has the quality in the top flight and fans need to remember he is still just 23.
Giving the centre-back a new improved long-term deal seems like a good move and put the pressure on him to become even better.
His man of the match display against Swansea is a level he should strive to meet every week and letting him know his important to Newcastle will help.
This Is Futbol rating: 8/10
Likely to happen?
It seems fairly likely that Lascelles will agree a new deal with the North East club as discussions commence.
The defender has become an integral part of Benitez’s side and helped them win promotion from the Championship last season.
Lascelles is only going to boost any England chances by staying at Newcastle and impressing in their starting line-up, while also benefiting under the tutelage of Benitez.
This Is Futbol rating: 9/10