Ashley Won't Budge On Pardew Targets
Mike Ashley and managing director Derek Llambias will stick to their valuations of Alan Pardew's summer targets, and have ruled out FC Twente striker Luuk de Jong.
Rumour has it Pardew can also forget his pursuit of Ajax defender Jan Vertonghen, who appears poised to join Tottenham.
Apparently, the deal to sign Twente's Brazilian-born defender Douglas is more complicated than we expected because he has to "work in Holland" to be eligible for Dutch selection.
We would expect the prospect of European football would attract the best players, and with Lille full-back Mathieu Debuchy, that is the case.
But one newspaper today claims "attracting talented players at what have proved to be bargain prices during recent transfer windows are over, and there is little doubt that they have become victims of their own success to an extent as a result".
Only Romain Amalfitano and Gael Bigirimana have been added to a squad which has lost Peter Løvenkrands, Leon Best, Danny Guthrie, Fraser Forster and Alan Smith.
A French Second Division player and a teenager ... not what Pardew had hoped for to "strengthen" his squad.
We are THREE players down, and are the two new players better than the five gone?
Bigirimana has only made 26 Championship appearances ... mostly as substitute ... so he is "one for the future".
Pardew said last month: "I would like three quality players in for when the players come back for training".
The players are back! Watch this space.
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