By Tom Blackburn
Newcastle have not made a bid for Everton and Ireland midfielder James McCarthy, according to a report.
Chronicle journalist Lee Ryder claimed on his personal Twitter account that there has been no bid yet, but made no comment on whether there would be an approach before the transfer deadline.
— Lee Ryder (@lee_ryder) August 28, 2016
The Mail claimed on Sunday morning that Newcastle were set to submit a formal offer for the 25-year-old midfielder, who has been slapped with a £20million price tag by the Premier League club.
McCarthy was left out of the Everton squad that beat Stoke 1-0 on Saturday but it is believed that Ronald Koeman wants a replacement before allowing the midfielder to leave Goodison Park.
Koeman has an array of midfielders available to him and is also looking to add another option, with a move for Newcastle’s Moussa Sissoko also possible before the transfer window shuts.
The Telegraph claim that Everton have shown interest in Sissoko and will hope to get a cut-price deal for the £30million-rated midfielder.
Even without a new addition, Republic of Ireland international McCarthy has fallen down the pecking order at Everton with the arrival of Aston Villa’s Idrissa Gueye, and was played out of position at right wing-back in the Toffees’ first two league games.
He has been a mainstay in the Everton side following his £13million move from Wigan three years ago, and still has four years remaining on his Goodison Park deal.
In the last three seasons, the former Hamilton star has made 113 league and cup encounters for the Toffees and has become popular with the Merseyside club’s fanbase.
Rafa Benitez has already persuaded several Premier League stars to drop down to the Championship this summer to aid Newcastle’s promotion push.
Notable additions Dwight Gayle and Matt Ritchie joined St James’ Park for a combined £22million, showing the club’s intent on an immediate return to the top-flight.
In other Newcastle transfer news, they are close to a second signing in 24 hours.