Transfer Talk: Magpies eye late deals after strong start to the season
Mega-rich Newcastle had been surprisingly restrained before snapping up Alexander Isak on Friday — but the Magpies could still splash more cash before the transfer window slams shut.
Eddie Howe's men have made an admirable start to the season, drawing 3-3 with reigning champions Manchester City last Sunday to maintain their unbeaten status.
But Iska was just the fourth signing of the summer, joining Nick Pope, Sven Botman and former loanee Matt Targett at St James' Park.
Ahead of Newcastle's clash with Wolves this afternoon, we take a look at where they could strengthen in the coming days.
Howe has made it clear that Newcastle only intend to make signings that improve the quality of their squad.
He said: "If there's a player that we can attract that we can afford and all the other things that you need to fall into place, I want to sign the best player I can.
"But it needs to fit. Everything, those are the conditions that we've got and are proving quite difficult.
"It's a small pool of players but not through us not widening the search — it's because there's not a huge amount of players that will make our group better and that's the confidence [we have] in the players we have. I think we've got a really good squad.
"Certainly, I'd love to add someone that can make us better but that is very difficult.
"Our search has been high and wide and far-reaching but I don't expect the pool of players that we have to pick from to change between now and the end of the window."
Despite spending £60m on Isak, the Magpies could yet target further firepower up front.
They have been linked with a plethora of strikers since the beginning of the window, including Hugo Ekitike, Liam Delap and Goncalo Ramos.
The latest target appears to be Watford's Joao Pedro. The Brazilian, 20, is also capable of operating on the left and Newcastle have reportedly submitted a bid worth up to £30m for the young attacker.
Alongside new man Isak, Howe's present central striking options are Callum Wilson and Chris Wood — but both are 30 and the former has often struggled with injury issues.
Acquiring another young, energetic alternative would be a smart move by the Magpies.
An area where Newcastle clearly need quality reinforcements is in central midfield.
Their first-choice trio of Bruno Guimaraes, Joe Willock and Joelinton has looked bright in the Tynesiders' opening three games — however, there is not a great deal of depth beyond them, with only the injured Jonjo Shelvey likely to dislodge any of his team-mates upon his return.
The Magpies reportedly made a bid of £50m plus add-ons for Leicester's James Maddison at the start of the month, signalling their intent to upgrade in the centre of the park.
The 25-year-old's 12 Premier League goals last season is one more than the aforementioned Newcastle trio managed between them in 2021-22, so he would clearly add firepower to Howe's armoury.
Newcastle already possess a winger of exceptional quality in Allan Saint-Maximin.
But on the opposite side, Miguel Almiron — for all his endeavour and industry — is simply not of the same calibre.
The Paraguayan scored just one Premier League goal in 30 appearances last season and did not register an assist.
Reserve options Ryan Fraser and Jacob Murphy do not represent an obvious step up in quality either — hence the Magpies' pursuit of a top-class wide man.
They chose to walk away from the hefty-priced Moussa Diaby of Bayer Leverkusen and have since turned their attention to 25-year-old Leeds star Jack Harrison.
The Magpies have reportedly been rebuffed twice in their efforts to land the left-footed winger, though, with bids of around the £20m mark deemed insufficient by the Yorkshire outfit.
Left-back is not a position of immediate concern, given Targett's loan deal has just been made permanent.
However, the former Aston Villa full-back picked up an injury against Nottingham Forest on the opening day, with Dan Burn called upon to fill in.
The towering defender played in that position frequently for Brighton, though Howe clearly sees him primarily as a centre-back and would prefer to utilise him in the middle.
Despite that desire, Burn has been selected on the left ahead of Matt Ritchie, Paul Dummett and Jamal Lewis — indicating a lack of trust in those options.
If Howe can move some of his fringe players on, finding a capable alternative to Targett may be an avenue he looks to pursue.