Chris Waugh believes Scott McTominay is admired by Newcastle United, although he’s acknowledged that a deal will be difficult.
Newcastle have been linked with some high-profile midfielders as of late as Eddie Howe looks to bolster his squad in his bid to make a solid push for the top four and win some silverware in his first full season in charge.
The Magpies are said to be keen on Youri Tielemans, Moises Caicedo and Youssouf Fofana, as they want someone who can help ease the pressure on Bruno Guimaraes and potentially play him further forward.
Someone who is an apparent long-term target is McTominay, given he is Premier League-proven and thought to be uneasy over his game-time prospects at Manchester United due to the summer arrival of Casemiro.
Despite being a target, Waugh has claimed on BBC Total Sport that it will indeed be difficult to sign McTominay given how much Man United want to keep him with their huge fixture schedule in mind.
He said: “McTominay is, again, someone Newcastle like, they asked about him last summer; they have him on the list again this month.
“I think it’s a difficult deal to do. I’ve actually been having quite a few conversations about that today [Tuesday] with people across in Manchester as well as across here, and I think Man United have some FFP issues, and so they may need to move some people on.
Would you like Newcastle to sign McTominay?
“But are they going to deal with one of their Champions League rivals in the middle of the season? I think that makes it doubtful.”
TIF Thoughts on links to McTominay…
It appears that Howe is looking for a more industrial midfielder if he’s indeed got a long-standing interest in McTominay, as his stats are very similar compared to Sean Longstaff, who is the midfielder that covers a lot of ground for the Magpies and does the hard yards, as highlighted by Alan Shearer on Match of the Day.
As Waugh spoke about, Man United are very unlikely to be keen on doing business with Newcastle given they are pushing for a spot inside the top four, and went on to mention the case of Jesse Lingard, whom they refused to sell to Newcastle last summer – and that was when the Magpies were fighting against relegation.
Given that Man United are still fighting on four fronts this season, they are going to need a lot of strength in depth if Erik ten Hag is to win any silverware this season, so selling someone as experienced as McTominay, who has been hailed as a ‘monster’, would be a very bold move – particularly to a direct league rival.