Newcastle United are closing in on a double signing before the close of the January transfer window with deals for Arsenal striker Eddie Nketiah and Brighton defender Dan Burn likely to bring an end to their recruitment this month.
Should the pair join Brazil international Bruno Guimarães in making permanent moves to Tyneside, it will bring a difficult final week of the window to a successful conclusion for Newcastle’s Saudi Arabian owners.
The new regime at St James’ Park have suffered plenty of setbacks over the past few weeks, but have worked tirelessly to ensure manager Eddie Howe’s squad is stronger than it was in December.
The Magpies hierarchy had also been hoping Manchester United would lower their £16.5 million loan-fee demand for Jesse Lingard but there has been no movement over the past 48 hours and sources have told Telegraph Sport they have reluctantly admitted defeat.
Whether the decision to walk away from negotiations forces Manchester United to lower their excessive loan fee and staying up bonus remains to be seen, but there is little confidence at the Newcastle end this will happen.
Although Lingard was keen on making the move to the North East he has not been willing to force his way out of Manchester United out of respect for the club he has been at for so long.
That has sharpened the focus on Newcastle’s other transfer targets and it is understood they are hoping to bring in at least another two players before the window shuts.
Brighton have rejected Newcastle’s first bid for Burn, but Newcastle have been encouraged to make a second offer.
The only potential sticking point is Brighton making unrealistic demands to sell a 29-year-old defender who does not want to remain on the south coast now that Newcastle have bid for him.
Telegraph Sport revealed Newcastle’s long standing interest in Nketiah earlier this month and they have been quietly working on that deal for some time.
Howe wanted to bring in a young striker to develop in this window before Callum Willson suffered a nasty calf injury that will rule him out of action until March at the earliest.
Nketiah has also attracted interest from Crystal Palace this month and there have been reports that Arsenal have already rejected a bid for the 22-year-old who has refused to extend a contract that expires at the end of the season.