Joe Willock has hinted that his future could lie at Newcastle after writing another chapter in his remarkable loan spell on Tyneside.
The 21-year-old Arsenal midfielder scored his sixth goal in as many Premier League games for the Magpies in Wednesday’s 1-0 win over relegated Sheffield United, taking his tally to seven since he arrived at St James’ Park back in January.
If that does not win him a role in Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta’s plans for next season, Newcastle will be at the top of what is sure to be a growing list of suitors for his signature.
Manager Steve Bruce has already signalled his intention to have a conversation with the Gunners about the player’s future. And Willock has indicated he will listen to what the Tyneside club has to say.
Asked what message he had for fans who implored him to stay during and after the game, he told NUFC TV: “I want to say thank you for making me feel so welcome and thank you for greeting me with open arms.
“I hope you’re satisfied with what I’ve given for the club so far. Hopefully there’s more to continue in the future. I’m not going to promise anything, but the conversation is going to be held.”
Willock is the first Newcastle player since striker Papiss Cisse to score in six successive Premier League outings for the club, and his intervention against the Blades proved decisive.
He struck with a firm downward header four minutes into first-half stoppage timefrom Jacob Murphy’s inviting cross.
The midfielder said: “To make history at this special club is special for me. I came here on loan to help the team and it’s turned into a brilliant story.
“It’s been tremendous and I’m so happy that we can sign off with a win at home.”
Newcastle in mix to sign centre-back
Meanwhile, Tottenham are reportedly in a three-way Premier League battle for the signature of centre-back Abdul Mumin this summer.
Spurs, Aston Villa and Newcastle are all showing an interest in the 22-year-old, who plays for Portuguese top-flight side Vitoria. But it’s the side from north London who are said to be leading the chase for his signature.
The Sun reports that Mumin, who only joined Vitoria from Danish side Nordsjaelland last year, will cost around £15million.
The young defender has firmly established himself as an important first-team player this season. Indeed, Mumin has made 26 first-team appearances for a Vitoria sitting sixth in the Portuguese Primeira Liga.
The report adds that Mumin is “quick” as well as “dominant in the air”. That will come as music to the ears of Tottenham fans, given that Davinson Sanchez is arguably the quickest centre-back on their books but is prone to too many defensive lapses.
An official approach is unlikely to take place for the defender at this stage. That is especially while a new manager is not in place.
Tottenham expect to rectify that situation over the coming weeks, with Ryan Mason currently in temporary charge.
Lazio boss Simeone Inzaghi is the current bookies’ favourite for the role, with Scott Parker and Graham Potter also firmly in the running.
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