Newcastle United are interested in a move for Inter and Turkey midfielder Hakan Çalhanoglu.
That is according to reports in Italy, which suggest that the former Bayer Leverkusen midfielder could be available for a fee of under €30m (£26m) in January.
The 28-year-old is capable of playing as an attacking midfielder or out wide, and could provide Eddie Howe with some much-needed versatility in the attacking third of the pitch.
Çalhanoglu’s potential signing is likely to cause multiple knock-on effects for Newcastle and the rest of the Premier League, so let’s take a look at some potential situations that could occur should the Inter star sign for the Magpies later this term…
A potential obstacle for Elliot Anderson
The 2022/23 season was meant to be the year Elliot Anderson potentially made a breakthrough in the Newcastle squad and given regular minutes of Premier League football at St James’ Park.
The 19-year-old midfielder has appeared off the substitutes’ bench in three Premier League fixtures so far, whilst also getting a start in the 2-1 Carabao Cup victory at Tranmere Rovers last month.
The Whitley Bay-born attack-minded midfielder is already going to have a tough time finding a spot in Howe’s starting XI on a regular basis as it is, considering five senior midfielders are potentially ahead of him in the pecking order when all fit.
Therefore, whilst a move for Çalhanoglu – who has previously been described as “exceptional” by former boss Stefano Pioli – may be celebrated across Tyneside and within the Newcastle squad, it may come as a personal frustration to Anderson, who would likely need to be shipped out on loan to get regular game time if the Inter man was to sign.
Rivals strengthened as Maddison chase ends
As we headed towards the beginning of the Premier League season this summer, it looked as if the Magpies were doing all they could to try and bring Leicester City star James Maddison to the club.
Newcastle had two bids for the 25-year-old midfielder turned down, with the latter reportedly being in the region of £50m.
Considering Çalhanoglu plays in an almost identical role to Maddison, you would assume that this would end Howe’s interest in the Foxes No 10, for the time being at least.
But this could still work against Newcastle, as it may potentially open the door for Tottenham Hotspur to make a move for the one-time England international, with the north London club also rumoured to be interested in a move for the former Norwich City man in the summer.
Therefore, the Tyneside club may have to think twice about the potential signing of Çalhanoglu if they are desperate to secure the services of Maddison, with the Leicester City man perhaps in line for a move to Spurs if he has more of a guarantee of regular football at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium – and therefore strengthening one of the Premier League rivals Newcastle will be looking to directly compete against in the coming years.
TIF Thoughts on Çalhanoglu…
We believe that whilst the signing of the 72-cap Turkey international would be an excellent piece of business for Newcastle, we really think that it’s in the club’s best interests to keep the door open for a potential Maddison deal.
The Magpies are aspiring to be a club on the same level, if not better, than Tottenham, and to see a potential target choose Antonio Conte’s side over them may be a tough one to take.
We therefore think that Newcastle should be gauging the interest that Maddison has in a move to St James’ Park in the near future before committing to a pursuit of Çalhanoglu.