Newcastle will not hold out for Jermaine Beckford
Beckford remains Newcastle's No 1 transfer target but Hughton has issued a thinly veiled threat to the players' Elland Road paymasters that he may turn to Aston Villa forward Marlon Harewood if their overtures for Leeds' 20-goal top-scorer are rejected. Newcastle have submitted a £1.5 million bid for Beckford who has submitted a transfer request but are considering a move to bring Harewood back to St James' Park if League One leaders Leeds dig in their heels over a player who will be available on a free transfer in the summer when his contract expires. Related ArticlesBeckford hands in transfer requestTaiwo set to leave ChelseaNewcastle's Beckford hopes dentedPremier League: transfer window guideThe Daily Bung: Leeds time it to perfectionNewcastle want BeckfordHughton said: "The ideal scenario would be to get players in as soon as possible so we know where we are but the most important thing is that they are the right players. "We have our targets and by the end of the window we have to make sure that we have strengthened in the positions that we want to strengthen. "We are not just looking at one player in every position. I think we have to have other targets that we are able to bring in. It doesn't always work out that you are able to bring in your number one target. "But I am still very confident that we will be able to bring in the right player to strengthen our squad before the end of the window. "We are working on getting our targets in but all of our work will continue to be done behind the scenes over the course of the month. "What we haven't done yet is rule out the possibility of bringing back players that we have had on loan earlier in the season." Championship leaders face mounting competition for Beckford's services with Bolton Wanderers, West Brom and Wigan are all said to be interested in the former Wealdstone striker. Hughton is also weighing up a move for a centre-half after the club's £2m move for Sheffield United defender Matt Kilgallon fell through. Stoke City defender Leon Cort - the brother of former Newcastle forward Carl - is next on Hughton's January hit-list following by Celtic skipper Gary Caldwell and Bolton's Andy O'Brien who were both once on the Tyneside club's payroll. Meanwhile, officials at Newcastle are talking to their Manchester United counterparts about making Danny Simpson's loan move a permanent one before his current deal at St James' Park expires.
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