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Eddie Howe admits there are 'no guarantees' on futures of two Newcastle stars

Howe admits there are 'no guarantees' on futures of two Newcastle stars
© Reuters
Eddie Howe admits that there are 'no guarantees' over the futures of two Newcastle United stars ahead of a "difficult summer".

Newcastle United manager Eddie Howe has admitted that he cannot guarantee that both Bruno Guimaraes and Alexander Isak will stay at the club ahead of a "difficult summer".

Both players are regarded as two integral first-team players at St James' Park, but they have been heavily linked with big-money exits in recent months amid the Magpies' financial predicament.

Newcastle's ability to spend in the last two transfer windows has been restricted due to the Premier League's Profit and Sustainability Rules, and CEO Darren Eales admitted in January that the club may need to sell some of their star players to balance their books and generate funds for new signings.

Recent reports have suggested that the Magpies may consider selling Guimaraes for the right price this summer, with Manchester City, Manchester United, Barcelona, Real Madrid and Paris Saint-Germain all said to hold an interest in the midfielder.

The 26-year-old, a fans' favourite at St James' Park, has chipped in with 13 goals and 13 assists since joining Newcastle in January 2022, and he is set to make his 100th appearance for the club in Saturday's Premier League trip to Fulham.

Newcastle United's Bruno Guimaraes acknowledges fans after the match  on March 2, 2024© Reuters

Howe keen to keep hold of Guimaraes

Guimaraes, who has just over four years remaining on his contract, has previously hinted that he is planning to move away from Newcastle in the future, but Howe is adamant that he wants the midfielder to stay put.

"Let me tell you players like Bruno, they are not around every corner, They are very rare," Howe said at a press conference on Friday. "Bruno should be appreciated for everything he brings. My intention would be to keep Bruno at the club for as long as we possibly can.

"I can never make guarantees though. That would be absolutely foolish of me. We have been in football long enough to know you don't know what is going to happen tomorrow. He is an integral part of the team and playing very well."

Asked whether he is confident that Guimaraes will stay, Howe added: "If a player can double his wages you are already in a difficult position. You have created that scenario and I am giving you the truth and the reality.

"Who knows what the future holds. But for our part in it we have to try to make the player at home and happy, develop them, develop their careers, their talents and hopefully that is enough to keep them here for a long time.

"A lot will depend on our ambitions and where the club is going to go in the foreseeable future. You set your ambitions not just in terms of talking but in actions, so we need to show to them that we are a club moving forward."

Newcastle United forward Alexander Isak celebrates scoring against Manchester City on January 13, 2024© Reuters

Howe has no concerns over Isak interest

Isak, meanwhile, has established himself as Newcastle's star attacker since making a club-record £63m switch form Real Sociedad in the summer of 2022, scoring 29 goals in 59 appearances, including 19 strikes in 32 games so far this season.

However, the 24-year-old recently refused to rule out a possible exit from the Magpies amid reported interest from the likes of Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur.

Asked if he is concerned by Isak's strong form alerting other clubs, Howe said: "I don't fear that. In some senses, that's what you want because it means your players are playing at a level that everyone appreciates and I want my players, all of them, to be playing above what they think they're capable of being.

"So no, I don't think fear is the right word. I want Alex to keep scoring goals, I want him to keep being in the headlines - I'm sure he wants the same thing - but we want to keep him long term."

Taking into account Newcastle's financial predicament and the absence of first-team players due to long-term injuries, including centre-back duo Sven Botman and Jamaal Lascelles who have both undergone knee surgery, Howe has acknowledged that the club will face challenges when navigating the summer transfer window.

"It's going to be a difficult summer," Howe added. "Not to say what positions we want to improve, because I would have my idea where I want to take the team, but there are a lot of unknown factors going into the summer so it's going to be quite difficult to prepare for what's going to happen."

Newcastle currently sit eighth in the Premier League table and are not guaranteed European football for next season, as they sit one point behind West Ham United in seventh and four points behind Manchester United in sixth with eight games left to play.

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Newcastle United's Bruno Guimaraes acknowledges fans after the match  on March 2, 2024
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