Newcastle to make move for Manchester United's Scott McTominay this summer

Scott McTominay - Newcastle to make move for Manchester United's Scott McTominay in summer - Reuters/David Klein
Scott McTominay - Newcastle to make move for Manchester United's Scott McTominay in summer - Reuters/David Klein

Newcastle United are looking into a summer move for Manchester United midfielder Scott McTominay as manager Eddie Howe feels the Scotland international has the physical attributes to succeed in his system.

McTominay has had a frustrating time under Erik ten Hag and has been used mainly as a substitute in recent months with Casemiro, Christian Eriksen and Fred all ahead of him in the pecking order when fit and available.

That has encouraged Newcastle to firm up the tentative interest they showed in January, when it became quickly apparent that Manchester United would not consider letting him join a team they considered to be a direct rival for a Champions League place.

Newcastle hope that position will have softened in the summer when Ten Hag will need to raise extra transfer funds by selling squad players.

McTominay is not the sort of glamorous name that will excite supporters but he has been on Newcastle’s wanted list for the last 12 months with chief scout Steve Nickson, director of football Dan Ashworth and Howe all agreeing he would add something different to the squad.

Newcastle were looking to sign a defensive midfielder at the start of January but rather than strengthen in that area, they weakened it by allowing Jonjo Shelvey to sign for Nottingham Forest.

Howe, who has admitted it has left him short in that department, always prefers to sign players he has watched extensively and tends to prioritise players with experience of playing in British football.

McTominay would be used as a deep lying midfielder to shield the back four, allowing playmaker Bruno Guimarares to play further up the pitch to add more creativity in the final third.

With his height and athleticism, McTominay would add some muscle in midfield and would also add a threat at set-pieces. At the age of 26, it is also believed he is a player who can still improve under Howe’s coaching and thrive in the holistic training ground environment.

In turn, McTominay is believed to be open to the idea of moving to the North East and impressed by the vast strides the team have made this season.

With Newcastle almost certain to be playing in Europe next season, McTominay would also add vital experience of playing on the continent. This is something Newcastle’s squad lacks and this is something that will be attractive in all their potential targets in the summer.

Newcastle have already expressed an interest in signing another Scotland international in Arsenal left back Kieran Tierney, who has gained plenty of European experience with Celtic and Arsenal.

As with Anthony Gordon, who arrived from Everton for £40m in January, the scouting team at Newcastle believe there is more to come from McTominay who probably needs a fresh start away from Manchester United.

Newcastle will not finalise any transfer plans until May at the earliest as their budget will be determined by what level of European competition they are playing in.

But Howe will be looking to add five or six players to the squad to give it greater depth to cope with the dual demands of continental and domestic football next season.

In an ideal world, Newcastle will add a defensive midfielder and a creative one in the summer and have not given up on the idea they will be able to sign England international James Maddison from Leicester City.

There is a fear, though, that Maddison wants to join a club that is in a position to win silverware immediately as well as able to offer higher wages than Newcastle currently can.