Newcastle make ‘a lot of money’ admission with FFP implications ‘around the corner’

Eddie Howe has admitted that it would cost Newcastle United ‘a lot of money’ to replace Callum Wilson this summer.

Wilson is approaching the final year of his contract at St James’ Park and has been linked with moves to Atletico Madrid, AC Milan and clubs in Saudi Arabia in recent months. Newcastle are going to have to be smart to strengthen several positions this summer, while complying with financial regulations, and player trading is one way the Magpies can create headroom.

However, if Newcastle were to let a player like Wilson go, the black-and-whites would obviously have to factor in the cost of bringing in a replacement of similar ability. Howe stopped short of declaring Wilson was not for sale, but the Newcastle boss touched on that dilemma.

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“It’s undoubted how I feel about Callum, how I feel about his qualities and what he can offer the team,” he told reporters. “If you lose a player of that quality, to find a player of equal standard will cost the club a lot of money.

“That’s always a big talking point about any business we do in the summer. If you lose a player, how can you replace him with the same quality with Financial Fair Play implications around the corner? There’s a lot to think about.”

Although Wilson has played in less than half of Newcastle’s games this season, only Alexander Isak and Anthony Gordon have scored more goals than the England international (eight). In fact, Wilson has averaged close to a goal every two matches during his Newcastle career and the number nine finished as the club’s top scorer in each of the previous three seasons.

However, fitness issues have limited Wilson to 104 appearances in his four campaigns on Tyneside to date. So does the 32-year-old have a point to prove on his return from injury in the final weeks of the season?

“Every player has a point to prove every single time they pull the Newcastle shirt on,” Howe said. “Callum Wilson does not necessarily have a point to prove in terms of his ability and what he can deliver. That’s undoubted, but we would love him to stay fit for a long period of time and to be able to execute that on a consistent basis so there’s a double-edged meaning to my answer, really.

“I want every player to have that burning desire every single game to fulfil their own needs and ambitions and, certainly, Callum has huge ambitions still. He’s still a very strong player and can make a big difference for us.”

Callum Wilson has missed the last two-and-a-half months with a pectoral injury
Callum Wilson has missed the last two-and-a-half months with a pectoral injury

Wilson looks set to make his comeback against Crystal Palace at some stage on Wednesday night after being sidelined for two-and-a-half months with a pectoral injury. Wilson suffered the setback in a tangle with Nottingham Forest defender Moussa Niakhate and this past week has enabled the ‘very physical’ number nine to ‘get confident in those situations’ again while coming up against his team-mates in training.

Wilson’s return is timely for the run-in – Howe has not substituted Alexander Isak since the beginning of March because of a lack of alternatives in reserve – and the veteran will be itching to send a reminder of his own qualities after watching his fellow striker score seven goals in his last seven games.

“I think there would have been, of course, a big element of frustration for him because he just wants to showcase his talents and what he can do for the team, but I know there’s a lot of respect between the two players,” Howe added.

“I know Callum would have been pleased with how Alex has performed for the team and helped the team when he’s not been available, but Callum will back himself. I’ve got no doubt about that. He will think that when he comes back, he can add a different dimension.

“He can play with Alex as well, I’ve always said that, and the two of them together make us a lot stronger when they’re both fit, so we’re delighted to have Callum back and already in training, he’s shown what we’ve been missing since he’s been injured.”

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View news Source: https://www.chroniclelive.co.uk/sport/football/transfer-news/newcastle-make-a-lot-money-29043729

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