According to sources, Newcastle United had a busy transfer window that saw them enhance their team in a number of areas, including full back and midfield. Eddie Howe reportedly has his eye on a defender that he has previously signed.
Eddie Howe’s team was one of the largest spenders in the league and expanded their roster by bringing in players worth almost £130 million.
But despite rumors about players like Antonio Silva and Edmond Tapsoba, Newcastle failed to make an investment in the center back position.
Newcastle “loves” both players, according to football journalist Fabrizo Romano, but the moves couldn’t be made in the summer transfer window because of the FFP consequences.
Shay Given, a former goalkeeper, said in a Sky Sports interview that he would have reinforced at center defense and said that Harry Maguire, the captain of Man United, would have been a good target.
However, it looks that Eddie Howe has now focused on another central defender, and this time, it’s one that he previously managed.
Howe is reportedly interested in Lloyd Kelly, according to Football Insider’s Pete O’Rourke, but Tottenham and Liverpool are also interested in the former England U21 player, so the Magpies may not be alone in their pursuit of him.
Kelly is a flexible defender who enjoys the advantage of being able to play either left back or center back. He established himself at Bristol City after graduating from the Championship team’s academy as a teenager, and the Cherries acquired him for £13 million in the summer of 2019.
Kelly only appeared on the field nine times while Howe was at Bournemouth because of a ligament injury that kept him out for the most of his rookie season.
But under the guidance of former Magpies captain Scott Parker and now-Newcastle assistant Jason Tindall, he had a significant impact for Bournemouth in the Championship. Kelly played 23 times for Bournemouth in 2022 as they avoided the drop under Gary O’Neil and earned promotion.
The Bristol-born defender, 24, has just one season left on his Bournemouth contract and the Cherries might think about selling him in January rather than allowing him leave for free.
Howe might attempt to strengthen the center back position in January, especially if he can get Kelly for a reasonable salary.
Sven Botman and Fabian Schar are Newcastle’s primary center back pairing, and Jamaal Lascelles and Dan Burn, who frequently play left back, are their only other center back alternatives.
Paul Dummett has played center back in the past, but throughout Howe’s whole tenure at Newcastle, he has only made three league substitute appearances, the most recent of which was in March 2022.