Newcastle 'against everybody else' as rivals ramp up prices, but Howe wants Toon to earn unpopularity

·2-min read

Eddie Howe has claimed rival Premier League clubs have raised their asking prices as they "didn't want to be seen to be helping" Newcastle United.

Newcastle were bought last October in a controversial takeover funded in large part by Saudi Arabia's Public Investment Fund.

The team, who were facing relegation, have improved drastically since then, helped by Howe's appointment as head coach and the investment of more than £200million in the transfer market.

However, Newcastle's attempts to do further business were hampered by the "narrative" around their wealth, Howe suggested on Friday, the day after a window in which they spent big money on Sven Botman and Alexander Isak closed.

"That was definitely something we felt in the market," he said ahead of Saturday's game against Crystal Palace.

"Domestic clubs didn't want to be seen to be helping us. We'll have to take that – that is part of where we are at the moment.

"We have certainly found there is no one there ready to do us a favour. It's the narrative regarding us that has changed.

"If there is anything domestically, teams will put their price up if it is Newcastle. That is the same around the world; that is something we are having to deal with.

"That is why we have walked away from a few deals, because I think it is important we are not seen as that club that will pay what is asked. I think it has to be fair."

Howe was asked if these difficulties had made the club more united, and while he hesitated in agreeing transfer business could have such an impact, he acknowledged: "There is a real feeling of us internally knowing we are against everybody else.

"That is healthy and I would embrace that. I would say we couldn't be more together at the moment."

Beyond their controversial owners, Howe's team were also unpopular in their approach to Wednesday's 2-1 defeat at Liverpool.

Having led in that game, Newcastle were accused of time-wasting by the Anfield crowd, who jeered them from the field after Fabio Carvalho's 98th-minute Reds winner.

It was put to Howe that this response and the market complications were due to Newcastle now being considered "contenders"; he disagreed they had yet achieved that status but had no issue with such a reaction.

"I will take that if we are contenders," he said. "But we have that all to prove. We are so early into the season.

"We need to elevate ourselves in points and league status to make sure we are seen as that. If that makes us unpopular, I will take it."