Jurgen Klopp green lights Newcastle deal for Liverpool man as Howe fails in bid for Brighton star
Newcastle are reportedly in the clear to push through a deal for Liverpool’s Nat Phillips after their efforts to prise a defender away from Brighton were swiftly rejected.
The Magpies are gearing themselves up for a frantic end to the transfer window. With Chris Wood and Kieran Trippier brought in, Eddie Howe wants more quality on board to aide their survival fight.
Ideally, the Newcastle boss would like to strengthen three positions: midfield, centre-half and left-back.
His efforts to land a prized Germany man to fill his left-back void, however, have on Wednesday taken a signficant backwards step. That comes after a deal for Bayer Leverkusen left-back Mitchel Bakker also fell short.
The hunt to bolster the midfield, however, does look more promising. Indeed, Newcastle are seemingly in the mix to sign an exciting Brazil international.
Perhaps most pressing of all, however, is the need to add a new central defender.
So far, this has proven a month of frustration for Howe, with efforts to sign Diego Carlos, Sven Botman and James Tarkowski all failing to get over the line.
As such, reports on Wednesday morning claimed Newcastle had submitted an offer to sign Brighton’s Dan Burn. The 6ft 7in centre-half has done well for Graham Potter’s side in recent times. As such, the Magpies reportedly submitted an £8m offer to the Seagulls for the 29-year-old on Wednesday morning.
However, the Daily Mail reports that the bid has been swiftly rejected by Brighton.
As such, the Mail claims it is uncertain whether Howe will look to increase his offer in a bid to twist Brighton’s arm.
Furthermore, Newcastle could have more joy if they were to pursue a move for Phillips.
The centre-half, 24, has slid down the pecking order this season. Phillips answered the call last season when Liverpool’s campaign threatened to unravel amid a spate of injuries in defence.
Magpies chasing initial loan deal
Rhys Williams and loanee Ozan Kabak played their part, but Phillips became the main man at the back, helping to steer Liverpool towards Champions League qualification.
But the signing of Ibrahima Konate and the return of their injured stars has seen Phillips marginalised this year. He is yet to play a single minute in the Premier League this campaign. As such, talk of a January exit began to swirl.
West Ham are among those keen, but are yet to make their move.
Now, as per the Liverpool Echo, Newcastle are ‘considering’ a loan move for Phillips before the winter window shuts.
This deal would include an ‘obligation to buy’ in the summer if the Magpies stay up. Liverpool’s asking price for Phillips is still £15m.
Klopp won’t stand in Nat Phillips way
Jurgen Klopp, while he would prefer a cash sale now, is unlikely to stand in Phillips’ way.
The Reds have recalled Williams from Swansea as cover, allowing Phillips to head out the exit door.
On the Englishman, Klopp said in December: “We cannot keep Nat Phillips forever, that’s clear. We needed him, just to be safe, for that half-year.
“We will see what happens in the window. He was fine doing it because he’s a great guy.
“People love him because of his heading but with his feet he is unbelievable. He’s a late starter, but his development is unbelievable. I would sign him for any club except Liverpool, because we have him.”
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