Newcastle woes exacerbated as star man ‘could have head turned’ after torrid season | Football | Sport


Newcastle United could lose star midfielder Bruno Guimaraes if they fail to qualify for the Champions League this season, according to reports. The Magpies look unlikely to match last year’s impressive fourth-place finish. They currently sit in 10th place, 15 points behind Aston Villa in the final guaranteed Champions League spot.

Failure to bring European football back to St James’ Park next season could see Guimaraes part ways with Eddie Howe’s side, with Paris Saint-Germain reportedly interested in the Brazil international, according to GiveMeSport.

It is claimed the player could have his head turned by clubs if an offer matches his ambitions. The midfielder has a £100million release clause, having signed a new five-year contract last October.

However, Spanish outlet Sport reported there is a ‘secret’ clause that allows Guimaraes to sign for Barcelona for just £60m. The high fee that Guimaraes would command may see Newcastle forced to offload their fan favourite due to financial constraints from the Premier League Profit and Sustainability Regulations.

The regulations prohibit teams from exceeding a loss of £105m over a three-year period. The Brazilian, signed from Lyon for £40m in the first transfer window after the Saudi takeover of the club, has been one of Newcastle’s most consistent performers in his two years in the North East.

In his 76 Premier League appearances, Newcastle’s number 39 has scored 12 goals and provided 11 assists. This season he has been one of their best performers.

He has ranked second highest in the Newcastle squad this season for assists, key passes, and tackles per game. However, his three goals and five assists this season have not been enough to prevent a hugely disappointing season overall for the Magpies.

Newcastle hoped to push on after last season, where they qualified for the Champions League for the first time in 20 years. They also reached the Carabao Cup final.

This season they have faltered, with European football proving too much for the Toon Army. Eddie Howe’s men crashed out of the League Cup in the quarter-finals to Chelsea. Despite a valiant effort, including a 4-1 victory over PSG, they finished bottom of their Champions League group, below PSG, AC Milan, and Borussia Dortmund.

The only hope of silverware remaining for the Magpies is the FA Cup. But they face a tough test, travelling to the Etihad to face treble winners Manchester City on Saturday.

Newcastle’s 3-2 loss at Stamford Bridge on Monday sees them remain in 10th place. Yet, they could slip into the bottom half of the table, with Mauricio Pochettino’s Chelsea only a single point behind, with a game in hand.

If Howe’s side launch a successful late-season revival to qualify for Europe next year, then Guimaraes is more likely to stay in the North East. But, with only 10 games left of the Premier League campaign, Newcastle fans will be worried they could lose their star man in the summer if clubs come sniffing around.

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